I often turn into an old man when it comes to most people’s knowledge of gay history, or rather their lack thereof. For many people there was Oscar Wilde, Stonewall and then somebody decided equal marriage would be nice, and that’s about it. You can kind of understand the ignorance, as LGBT history is so resolutely ignored in schools that you’d be forgiven for thinking there isn’t one, so anything that comes along to remind us it was a long, complex path to get us where we are is very welcome. [Read more…]
RJ (Nick Ferrucci) is a high school athlete who’s now out of education and keen to take on missionary work, spreading the word of the Church Of Jesus Christ Of The Latter Day Saints (aka Mormons). It’s something many thousands of young Mormons do, so RJ heads away from home and gets paired with Chris (Ben Farmer).
Together they are tasked with going out and spreading the word, trying to get as many people interested in their religion as possible, with the hope the newcomers will eventually be baptised as Mormons. Although they initially take to their task with fervour, Chris soon begins to flag and doubt whether they’re doing the right thing. Slowly the two young men fall for one another – something that’s particularly difficult in their church, which is deeply homophobic. [Read more…]
If I had to put a bet on which of today’s crop of young comedians will still be on our screens in a couple of decades time, I’d put my money on Jack Whitehall. I almost hate myself for saying that as he’s has that mix of being posh (and seemingly getting posher with every day) and overconfident that normally results in the reflex reaction, ‘tosser’. [Read more…]
A few years ago Peter Kay got a lot of stick when he released the DVD, Live At The Manchester Arena. The problem was that it was taken from the same tour as the Live At The Bolton Albert Halls release, and so while still hilarious, much of the routine was exactly the same as what his fans had seen before. He seems to have realised that perhaps that wasn’t the greatest of ideas, as while Live And Back On Nights is about the same tour as The Tour That Doesn’t Tour Tour DVD, it goes out of its way to offer something different (although the cover does still make it look like a completely new show). [Read more…]
Thanks to the TV series Tom Goes To The Mayor and Tim And Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!, Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim have quite the cult following and so have decided to move into film with Tim & Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie. To do so they’ve teamed up with Will Ferrell and Adam McKay’s Funny Or Die, and with cameos from Ferrell, Jeff Goldblum, Zach Galifianakis, Will Forte, John C. Reilly, it all sounds like this should be hilarious.
Sadly it isn’t – or more accurately, it has some very funny moments, but largely it’s just dumb. You get the feeling Tim & Eric are people who know how to make comedy in bite-sized chunks but have floundered when trying to stretch things out to feature-length. The bits that work are essentially slightly surreal sketches within the main narrative, but everything inbetween is either dull, stupid or just plain lazy. It also suffers from the comedy killer that is briefly destroying the characters that have been built up just for a cheap joke. [Read more…]
Note: Some of this review was previously published in connection with the cinema release
I know the exact moment when I gave up on the idea that This Means War was going to be a good movie. Fairly early on Lauren (Reese Witherspoon) is shopping with her friend, Trish (Chelsea Handler), a character who only exists to give Lauren an excuse to say exactly what she’s thinking at any point in time.
However it wasn’t the lazy exposition (something the film loves to engage in) that made me realise that behind the fireworks there wasn’t much going on in This Means War, it was because the scene was set up so that the two women were doing their entire supermarket shop based on what was on the end of the aisles. They picked out detergent, looked at special offers and neither of them seemed to need anything that wasn’t right there in front of them. [Read more…]
While we’ve mainly concentrated on the UK releases of gay interest entertainment, now we’ve got one from the US. Following on from last year’s release of Black Briefs comes Blue Briefs, a selection of six award-winning, gay-themed short films, ranging from looks at unrequited love to dealing with being gay in a restrictive environment. It’s a great selection. Let’s take a look at the shorts: [Read more…]
We don’t get to see a lot of Icelandic movies, partly because as a nation of just over 300,000 people, they don’t exactly produce an endless stream of films of international calibre. However Iceland does make a few films each year and every so often something emerges from the country that deserves a wider audience. Jitters is one of them, a kind of Icelandic Skins, centring on a boy coming to terms with being gay, while his friends have their own issues with teenage life.
Rather than Iceland, the opening of the movie takes place in the UK, where young Gabriel (Atli Oskar Fjalarsson) is on a three week trip to Britain. He shares a room with Markus (Haraldur Ari Stefansson) and on the last night they share a kiss. Once back in Iceland, Gabriel hopes there will be more, but Markus treats it very much as if it never happened. [Read more…]
Controversial for its violence on its first release, 1977’s Rolling Thunder has since become a bit of a cult classic, partly because of Quentin Tarantino’s admiration for it, and partly because it’s been mysteriously absent from DVD. As a result its reputation has grown while it’s been pretty difficult to actually watch it.
Now it’s arrived in the UK in a new Blu-ray & DVD release, and we can finally get to see what the fuss is about. The movie is essentially a revenge thriller, but one that’s more grounded and morally complex than most entries in the genre. The film opens with Major Charles Rane (William Devane) arriving back in the US, after years being tortured in a North Vietnamese prison. While he has hopes of rebuilding his life, he discovers his wife has taken up with another man and his son doesn’t remember him. [Read more…]
Young Adult has Oscar pedigree written all over it. Directed By Jason Reitman (nominated for Up In The Air and Juno) in collaboration with everyone’s favourite hip writer, Diablo Cody (of Juno fame), and with the beautiful and talented Charlize Theron (Oscar winner for Monster) starring.
On paper it would appear that Mavis Gary (Theron) is a successful, beautiful 37-year-old writer living life to the full in Minneapolis, who’s enjoying all the trappings that life should bring a former prom queen. However, it is obvious from the opening scenes that her life is in a mess. She wakes up from a drunken stupor, having fallen asleep on her bed fully-clothed. She shuffles round her dishevelled apartment, drinks Coke for breakfast, prepares breakfast for her and her dog Dolce from ready made packet food, whilst watching The Kardashians on TV. [Read more…]