“We’re both edgy queers,” Rapport said. “We wanted something that was a little bit in your face.”
The club attracts a core group of about 10 to 15 locals, most of whom identify as queer. Films are shown on a projector mounted inside a large loft at Kasuri, a chic clothing boutique Osofsky opened in 2014 that sells Comme des Garçons and other avant-garde labels, and where Rapport runs a small queer bookstore and hosts exhibitions, life drawing classes and queer happenings.
This night’s film was “My Beautiful Laundrette,” Stephen Frears’s 1986 drama about the star-crossed romance between a Pakistani man (Gordon Warnecke) and a white punk (a baby-faced Daniel Day-Lewis) in South London, a movie Osofsky said he’d seen about 300 times. The crowd skewed Gen X, and was hushed throughout the film.
Cat Tyc was there with her friend, Andrea Kleine, in the front row. Tyc said she watches films at home a lot but makes a point to attend the club because it gives her a chance “to talk to people that you see around but have no other reason to talk to them.”
“There’s always an electric charge that’s not there when you’re sitting at home,” Kleine added.
Curiosity about the unknown is what drew people in on a recent Sunday evening to Fiction, a coffee house and jazz lounge in Williamsburg, for the Under-Scene Film Night. Ryland Swartz said he started the biweekly series in 2022 because “people want curation and direction and have someone say ‘you should look at this’ rather than look through 1,000 things on the internet.”
The movie was Richard Ayoade’s 2015 science-fiction dark comedy “The Double,” starring Jesse Eisenberg in dual roles of an office pushover and his conniving doppelgänger. Most people who showed up said they were unfamiliar with it.
But a film’s popularity matters not to Swartz, a filmmaker by day. The less popular the better, he said, to fit the club’s mission to show movies “that people have heard of but may not remember fondly, or movies that deserve a second look.”