Elizabeth Purchell isn’t afraid of “Transexual Menace,” even though she is a transgender woman and the film sounds like the kind of hateful propaganda you’d find for sale at a convention of conspiracy nuts.
But “Transexual Menace” is a cornerstone of documentary filmmaking about transgender people — a 1996 time capsule made by the maverick and prolific queer German director Rosa von Praunheim.
And Purchell, 32, is a historian of queer film who has a soft spot for movies that provoke, arouse, tickle and otherwise stir the queer cinema pot. “It’s great that we have queer rom-coms, but I want to be challenged,” said Purchell during a phone interview from her home in Austin, Texas. “I don’t want to see the 200th coming out film.” “Transexual Menace” is one of six documentaries in “Revolt of the Perverts,” a new von Praunheim retrospective that Purchell put together for Brooklyn’s Spectacle Theater, where the series continues through June 27.
Purchell will be in town at the end of the month to introduce some of the films in person. The series is one of the latest queer movie endeavors from Purchell.