There have been several attempts at making gay-themed teen comedies, but most have failed in one way or another. Either the acting was abysmal or more commonly the script lacked wit and direction, feeling more dumb and dull than entertaining and memorable. G.B.F. is certainly a step up from those, with more polished production values, a great cast (including a fair few recognisable faces) and a script with both charm and wit.
Tanner (Michael J. Willett) and Brent (Paul Iacono) are longtime best friends who are both gay, although that’s only known to their closest friends. Brent knows that the three queen bees at their high school – Fawcett, Caprice and ‘Shley – all desperately want a gay best friend to consolidate their social status, and Brent it determined that he should fulfil this role by coming out. However by accident it’s Tanner that’s outed, while Brent retreats back into the closet.
Suddenly Tanner is in demand from all three girls, who put aside their differences as they each attempt to court his attention. He’s also wanted for the gay-straight alliance, which has never had an openly gay member before. As Tanner’s social standing rises, his friendship with Brent is severely tested. Then, when it becomes clear he won’t be allowed to take another boy to the prom, things get really complicated.
G.B.F. is a movie that tries to keep an awful lot of balls in the air at once. While it may occasionally drop a few, it still keeps enough of them moving to ensure there’ll be a smile on your face and you’ll feel entertained. That’s certainly helped by the cast, including a bright and shiny selection of talented youngsters, along with the likes of Rebecca Gayheart, Horatio Sanz, But I’m A Cheerleader’s Natasha Lyonne and the always glorious Megan Mullally (who is looking absolutely fabulous, it has to be said). Even Harry Potter’s Luna Lovegood, aka Evanna Lynch, shows up as a student who’s determined to keep gays out of the prom.
The movie has plenty of good one-liners and like any good teen movie it keeps you smiling and leaves you feeling good at the end. There are admittedly a few times when the character progressions aren’t 100% convicing, but hey, this is a teen flick, so you can’t get too hung up on that. Mostly though it’s fun, entertaining and has some good things to say.
Overall Verdict: Far better than your average gay teen movie. G.B.F. is a witty, entertaining movie about a new sort of coming out, where young LGBT people are stuck between being reviled and the ‘in thing’.
G.B.F. is available in cinemas & VoD in the UK now and will be available on DVD & Blu-ray on April 14th.
Reviewer: Tim Isaac