Director. Ryerson-trained, Toronto-based Pat Mills came out of nowhere with her first feature Secondary High (co-directors Emily Halfon, b. 1979, and Hazel Bell-Koski, b. 1977, 2003, 90). A rough-edged graduation film from Ryerson students, Secondary High is the demented triptych of pubescent revolt, trauma and desire that DeGrassi High and the NFB anti-homophobia films should have been. Among countless high moments is Sally the vampire’s rejection of a blond jock from her lineup of straight football victims because she recognizes a kindred closet case. He then immediately falls into passionate liplock with the annoyingly cheerful “Gay Straight Alliance” proselytizer guy under the rainbow flag as the lesbo punk band “Six Healthy Fists” escalate their cacaphony to new levels of decibel defiance. The filmmaking team’s manifesto reads “Continuity is for pussies,” which explains the snow on the street all year round. This ebullient queer Canadian update on Blackboard Jungle was a sleeper hit of the 2003 queer festivals. Mills’s earlier fiction short was The Affected Turtleneck Trio (2002, 18), whose jist is resisting the artistic establishment!
Toronto , ON