It took quite a long time for I Love You Phillip Morris to make it to UK cinemas, partly because it’s a bit of a tough sell. It’s a film that moves from broad comedy to deeply felt drama, doesn’t shy away from the gay side of its story, and makes a hero out of a man who in most cases would be seen as the bad guy. However despite all these difficulties, the movie succeeds admirably. [Read more…]
Cinema, DVD and Blu-ray reviews
I’m feeling conflicted. On the one hand Sacha Baron Cohen’s follow-up to Borat is very funny but on the other after watching the movie I couldn’t help but feel a bit uncomfortable, and not because of the way it sets up fame-whoring idiots and unsuspecting homophobes.
The basic plot is that Bruno is an arch, camp, Austrian fashionista with his own TV show, however after a disastrous accidental appearance at a fashion show dressed in a Velcro jumpsuit, he gets Schwartz-listed so he won’t be able to attend any more events. [Read more…]
Only a few years ago, the idea of Hollywood making a movie almost completely peopled by gay characters would have been virtually unthinkable. However it seems Brokeback Mountain might have opened a few doors, as not long after that film came out both Gus Van Sant and Bryan Singer announced they’d be making movies based on the life of Harvey Milk, who in 1977 became the first openly gay man to be elected to political office in California. However Van Sant’s film was the first out of the gate, while Singer’s has now fallen by the wayside. That’s probably not a bad thing, as it’s difficult to imagine Singer’s take on the subject being better than Milk. [Read more…]
What a confusing movie The Kids Are All Right is. Kids with two mothers? What craziness! Whoever heard of such as thing! And it has two women living in the same house, both of whom have fathered a child by the same sperm donor! Nuttiness.
At one point, when Julianne Moore was under the bed covers between Annette Bening’s legs, I even thought they were trying to suggest these two mothers were having some sort of sexual relationship, but then I heard a strange buzzing sound coming from down there and realised Moore must have just lost her cell phone or something. [Read more…]
If you ever told someone about West Side Story who didn’t know anything about it, their response is likely to be, ‘That sounds awful!’ It is a concept you really wouldn’t think would work on the screen, except for a niche audience. After all, it is essentially a film that asks you to accept a bunch of street toughs who sort everything out with ballet, and which features plot twists (admittedly borrowed from Romeo & Juliet) that are far-fetched to say the least.
However thanks to an incredible conjunction of talent, it doesn’t just work but is one of the greatest musicals ever created. As you probably know, the film is essentially Romeo & Juliet but transferred to the streets of New York, with the Capulets and Montagues replaced by the white street gang The Jets and the Puerto Rican Sharks. [Read more…]
Set in Mississippi in the early 60s, The Help deals with the world of segregation, when black women raised the children of white women, but weren’t allowed to use the same drinking fountains, sit in the same part of the bus and, as the movie says, often couldn’t even use the same toilet.
Young, rather liberal, Skeeter (Emma Stone) returns home after getting a college education to find that the black maid she’s known and loved since childhood, Constantine (Cicely Tyson), no longer works for them, but nobody will tell her exactly why not. While all Skeeter’s friends are busy becoming wives and mothers – and never questioning the idea that the black women who work in their houses should be treated as second class citizens – Skeeter embarks on a project to write a book about these maid’s experience of lif. However she needs to recruit some of ‘the help’ to tell her about their lives. [Read more…]
While a lot of the time in the world of no-budget gay movies it wouldn’t make much difference if there’d been more cash to give a film a bit more polish, with Tru Loved it’s a real shame as its lack of panache (particularly it’s audio problems) is likely to limit its audience more than it should.
Tru (Townsend) has just moved from San Francisco with her two moms to a much smaller community. There she meet Lodell (Thompson), the high school quarterback. [Read more…]
If you were wondering whether the lives of crack-addicted rent boys were a barrel of laughs, then Men For Sale is here to say that they aren’t. Well, that doesn’t exactly come as a big surprise, but does this documentary have anything new to say about the subject? [Read more…]
All Boys promises a lot to a range of interests but delivers very little. Those expecting this documentary look at the Czech gay porn industry to offer some titillation won’t find much, despite a fair amount of nudity (although most of the stronger nudity is blurred). Those hoping to learn more about the world of porn and those involved in it won’t be particularly edified either.
The problem comes from the documentary’s narrow focus, which seems to want to explore whether the rise of the gay porn industry in the Czech republic is a good thing or if it has just led to the exploitation of young men. However it feels as if it’s so keen to say that it has exploited people that it fails to actually argue the point. [Read more…]
Towards the end of HP Mendoza’s directorial debut musical, Fruit Fly, there’s a song where the cast sing about doing workshop versions of stage productions. While presumably the inference is that much of life feels like a workshop for the main act, when it is actually the main act, I couldn’t help wondering whether it was actually a bit of a mea culpa for the movie itself.
It’s not that the movie is bad – far from it in fact – just that it does have the feel of being a workshop that hasn’t quite found itself yet, which becomes evident when it has to resort unnecessarily to postmodern effects to underline its themes and ideas. But enough with the poncey deconstruction. Is it worth a look? [Read more…]