Written by stars Tara Karsian and Andrea Grano and directed by Andrew Putschoegl, “BFFs” is a warm, winning female buddy comedy that turns the genre on its head in gently surprising ways. Its subversive story turns on Kat (Karsian) and Samantha (Grano), the titular best buddies whose middling ruts find them pretending to be lovers to land a spot at a poolside couple’s retreat.
The retreat is ridiculously called “Closer to Closeness” — exactly the kind of thing most discerning couples looking to rebuild themselves should avoid, right? By the end of this weekend of relationship boot-camp, these eccentric BFFs are entangled in unexpected ways — from befriending their fellow, and rather vanilla, couples in crisis (both straight and gay), to wondering if there may actually be some chemical fizzle between them.
The film has wended its ways along the festival circuit — and down the California coast — from Santa Barbara to Newport Beach. This weekend, it plays Los Angeles’ LGBT-geared Outfest and while it’s not an out-and-out lesbian rom-com, it does flirt with the possibilities, and fluidities, of female friendship. Karsian and Grano display crackling comic chops, as both pals and faux-bedfellows.
As it continues to expand its programming to accommodate changes in queer filmmaking and culture, Outfest was right to select this witty almost-love story for its diverse, inclusive lineup.
See “BFFs” at the Harmony Gold Theater during Outfest on Friday July 11 at 7:00pm.