In the packed Barrymore Theater Saturday, the atmosphere was heating up after a snowy day as Madison fans were treated to another year of HUMP! Film Fest.
Kicking off with a new rendition of the rules, creator Dan Savage acted as a press secretary for the film fest. The same rules as always: no catcalling, no phones and, most importantly, have fun. This year’s festival was just as entertaining as last year’s, if not more. With a round of applause following each film, it was evident that Madison had been patiently waiting for HUMP! to make its way back.
Boldly entertaining and wildly hilarious, this year’s selections maintained the same themes of sex positivity, but have been becoming increasingly diverse in nature. With a variety of sexual expressions, the film fest changed the sexual script.
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The opening film, “Paint Party,” was abstract and artistic, comparable to a really raunchy EDM music video. Other films were hilarious, prompting roars of laughter from the crowd. This year’s winner in Best Humor, “Troughman,” was a musical number on one man’s desire for a golden shower and the runner-up, “Task Master,” delved into a day in the life of an obedient sub. The audience’s personal favorite seemed to be “Optic Perve,” a collection of body parts with googly eyes everywhere, as it received the most applause and laughter.
It is evident that HUMP’s! selection process is well-honed. All of the films this year embodied sex positivity in unique, novel ways with a vast display of diversity, showing sex is for all identities.
With vast representation in ages, sizes, sexualities, genders and races, HUMP! aims to shift the supposed norms around sex. Conventional pornography caters to a particular set of identities, largely those who are white, cisgender and straight. This has closed off porn from a vast majority of the population and create harmful standards of what sex should be like.
Films such as “Spin,” an amalgam of identities playing an adult version of spin the bottle, and “All of Us,” an exploration of love and sex for a gay trans couple, offered a broader perspective on what sex means to different people. HUMP! epitomized the idea that sex is individualistic, human, normal and best of all, a positive force.
Since the festival is comprised of amateur films, the festival is now accepting submissions for 2020. For more information on how you can submit your own films, visit their website.