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Getting tied up with CineKink

Opening gala highlights features of film festival… and some rope bondage, too!

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It’s like wearing a hug…

CineKink, the “kinky film festival,” celebrated the start of its national tour in a most appropriate way: a kinky kick-off at the Erotic Heritage Museum.

The festival is in its seventh year, but this weekend marks its first time in Las Vegas. Last night’s opening gala included rope-bondage demonstrations from erotic rope enthusiast group Reverse Tensionz, a musical performance of “The Pinky Song” by Alicyn Packard and a performance by sexologist Dr. Carol Queen. Linda Vandever, CineKink cofounder and director, tells me the film festival, as well as its kick-off event, is about creating “a sex-positive vibe.”

“People are trepidatious. They’re expecting an old porn theatre with men in raincoats. Then they come and see its just (normal) people. People don’t realize how cordial it is.”

Cordial may have been an understatement last night. The folks from Reverse Tensionz got downright hands-on, offering to tie up anyone who wanted to give it a try. After volunteering to don a chest and arm harness made completely of rope, I learned firsthand that comfort and constraint are not mutually exclusive. In fact, a properly done harness makes you feel like a giant invisible friend is hugging you, though you cannot return the embrace because your arms are tied behind your back.

Calendar

CineKink
May 14-15, various times, $10 per screening, festival passes $15-$50.
Onyx Theatre, 732-7225.

“We’re showing people that it’s comfortable, and that you’re allowed to laugh,” says rope enthusiast Matteo. “It’s fun.”

Breaking down some of the misconceptions about fetish activities is one aspect of CineKink. The films, which will be shown at Onyx Theatre today and tomorrow, explore everything along the wide spectrum of adult themes, including mainstream porn, mistresses, sex toys, S&M and swinging. After certain films, panel discussions will be held with the filmmakers and educators like Queen and UNLV’s Dr. Lynn Comella.

It’s a festival of kinky entertainment and education — and not just for the viewers. Filmmaking duo Jessica King and Julie Keck say the process of making their short film “Libidoland” (Saturday, 1 p.m.) required doing research into the world of autoerotic asphyxiation and bondage.

The film follows a married couple’s first foray into extreme kink, and King and Keck hope audiences draw from the short the message that sex lives of married people don’t begin and end with sitting on the couch. “People think single people are the ones having all the fun, with one-night stands,” King says.

Adds Keck, “Our couple (in Libidoland) is just a regular married couple. So, we’re showing kink in the context of a loving relationship.”

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