Youth focused LGBTQIA+ Films to Open & Close KASHISH 2021

The 12th edition of KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival, South Asia’s biggest LGBTQIA+ film festival, will open on August 19th virtually with the Teddy Award winner No Hard Feelings about Iranian refugees in Germany, and will close on September 5th with the Australian film Unsound about a young deaf trans man’s romance with a musician.

“What a sheer joy to open and close KASHISH 2021 with two brilliant award winning films centered on the youth. These films are not only layered and sensitive, but also are an entertaining exploration of the landscape of LGBTQIA+ youth – their aspirations, their dreams. These two films will bookend a whole range of feature films, documentaries and short films that are playing as part of KASHISH 2021. These joyful youth films will certainly help Unlock With Pride. What is best is you can watch it from your own homes, not only in India, but across the world too,” said Sridhar Rangayan, festival director

The opening film No Hard Feelings is about Parvis (Benjamin Radjaipour), the son of exiled Iranians, who after being caught shoplifting is sentenced to community service at a refugee shelter where he meets the siblings Banafshe (Banafshe Hourmazdi) and Amon (Eidin Jalali), who have fled Iran. As a romantic attraction between Parvis and Amon grows, the fragile relationship between the three is put to the test.

Poster of the movie No Hard Feelings

The director brings his own personal experience of growing up as a second generation Irani migrant, and also explores his own experiences as a gay man, lacking words to talk about his identity. In his work, Faraz re-inhabits this history and builds a visual archive of migration in Germany.

The closing film Unsound is a beautiful heartwarming story of Noah (Reece Noi – Games Of Thrones) who returns disillusioned to his mother’s home in Sydney, and meets Finn (deaf actress Yiana Pandelis –Legends ), a proud young, trans-man who works and runs a local centre and nightclub for his deaf community. But as the two become closer, and with no shared language to fall back on, they only risk hurting each other, as they learn to be true to themselves.

A still from movie Unsound

“It is so awesome to see that a hearing impaired person has been cast to play the lead part of Finn. This is what diversity and inclusivity in casting is all about,” said Rangayan.

Speaking about Unsound, Suzy Wrong has said in a review on JOY 94.9 FM, “For me, a person of trans experience, I found it not only refreshing but also unimaginably inspiring to see something so sweet, yet authentic… Ultimately, this is about disadvantaged people getting opportunities and it was fantastic that they gave someone with a disability this opportunity.”

KASHISH 2021 will be held online from August 19th to September 5th over three weekends and will screen 221 films from 53 countries. There are full-festival passes and weekend passes to attend the festival both from within India and globally too. Registration within India can be done at

Details of all film programs, schedule and how to register to attend can be found at the festival website