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Dan Savage and Hump porn: “how bad should I feel for watching this?" 

The Hump! Film Festival comes to New Orleans Nov. 11-12

click to enlarge Sex advice columnist Dan Savage founded the Hump! Film Festival.

Sex advice columnist Dan Savage founded the Hump! Film Festival.

With all the pornography available on the internet, it wouldn't seem like a porn film festival would attract people to a theater. But the Hump! Film Festival is not your average porn.

  "Hump porn is made for all the right reasons," says festival founder and sex advice columnist Dan Savage via phone from Seattle. "It's what (the filmmakers) want to do. It's something they enjoy. It's something they want to share. You never look at a Hump porn thinking 'How bad should I feel for watching this?'"

  There are 22 films in the 2015-2016 "festival," all of them under five minutes and screening together in one 90-minute show. While there are some comic films that just use sex as a subject, most of the films feature full nudity, some have gentle sex, others have boisterous romps and a few orgies, including one costumed extravaganza culminating on a trampoline in a music video parody of Katy Perry's "I Kissed a Girl."

  New Orleanians can see the films Friday and Saturday, Nov. 11-12, at The Broad Theater. After the tour, the film will be destroyed, and none of the movies are posted online by Hump. That's part of the deal offered to amateur filmmakers for sharing their intimate thoughts.

  "You have people making films with their friends and lovers that's an expression of their unique sexuality, sexual interests, sexual expression, their gender expression (for an) audience — for 98 percent of whom this isn't the kind of porn they would ever watch," Savage says. "But if there is real passion in the film, real humor and the film is sexy, these audiences — that are almost overwhelmingly not into whatever these films are about — will vote it up and give it an award. That's kind of moving."

  In the 2016 slate, Savage likes two films in particular. In its sweetest film, Hysterical Bullshit, a woman gets excited while reading heated diatribes from Mike Huckabee's God, Guns, Grits and Gravy. Lube Dispenser is an "unsettling and kinky" film featuring two people wearing animal masks who have highly fetish-y sex in the woods near someone (a hunter?) whom they've restrained.

  The film strives to include a full gamut of sexuality, from masturbation to straight and gay sex to a couple of transgender women copulating during voiced-over interviews about what gets them excited. The slickly shot Cake Boss features closeups of two beautiful bodies as a man pours baking ingredients over a woman's body. Two Boys and a Rope is an elaborate hotel sex interlude involving restraints and a bright blue pair of Seattle Seahawks socks.

  A trio of comedies is hilarious, but their subjects likely would keep them out of most film festivals. In Collector, a man gives a tour of his cluttered home's assortment of jars and containers of semen, all hilariously labeled and explained. In Film Bonoir, two men imagine a sexual encounter as a puppet film noir mystery caper — starring penises costumed in tiny wigs and googly eyes. Let's Try to F—k apes a particular style of "educational" film popular in grindhouse theaters — in a black-and-white movie with a cheery narrator in which a nerdy young man learns the ropes of finding sex partners.

  "Compared to what people can see on their phones, Hump is practically wholesome," Savage says.

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