The Misandrists is the latest high-camp satire from Canadian provocateur Bruce LaBruce, which premiered in the Panorama section of 2017’s Berlin Film Festival. After toning down his extreme tendencies for 2013’s surprisingly tender festival favourite Gerontophilia, the politically radical and explicitly sexual content of his best known work is back in force.
Set in 1999 in Ger(wo)Many, the film opens as a riff on Don Siegel’s The Beguiled, which was co-incidentally remade by director Sofia Copolla last year. Two schoolgirls, Hilde and Isolde (Olivia Kunisch and Kita Updike respectively) find an injured revolutionary soldier (Volker, played by Til Schindler) in the woods, and take him to the basement of the country house where they stay – which is the home of a lesbian terrorist cell, where no men are allowed to enter and the sole aim is to topple the patriarchy.
Susanne Sachße plays Big Mother, the terrifying leader of the group, who believes that lesbian sex is the key to female domination, encouraging the girls to watch and create pornography, alongside reading all the feminist literature under the sun. When a police officer inevitably comes searching for the missing soldier, suspicions are naturally raised – and as the missing soldier continues to live in the basement, secrets are revealed that put the group’s aim of destroying the patriarchy into question.
“Not since Polanski’s Repulsion (1965) and Patty Jenkins’s Monster (2003) have you seen such rabid females expressing their repulsion of men.”
— Dirty Movies
“A playful provocation about a lesbian separatist terrorist cell called the Female Liberation Army, plotting to topple the patriarchy and using porn as their chief propaganda tool.”
— The Hollywood Reporter
“It’s a wild romp with all the campy noir you might expect in a film by the father of queercore”
Did You Know?
Writer director Bruce La Bruce takes aim at “terrorist chic” in The Misandrists. Set in 1999 the film is loosely a sequel to The Raspberry Reich according to La Bruce in an interview with Now Toronto. Review our Gay Themed Films Here
Read our interview with director Bruce LaBruce