Started in 2007 to keep a track of gay films that I watched, this blog has come much further than I had planned. There are tons of movies that I need to watch and review here. Through this blog, I want to give you genuine, my personal heart-felt review of the films that I see. These are my personal thoughts and opinions about the films and I would love to hear your thoughts on these films as well. I always reply to comments in a day or two. Please help me make my blog more popular by becoming a member, following it and by recommending it to your friends. As far as I know this is one of the very very few gay movie review blogs where reviews are not linked or copy-paste imdb summary. Enjoy and do keep writing your feedback.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Pedro

Finally I get to see a decent film after a series of trashy gay films. At least this film had a message, a theme, a meaning and emotions behind it. It was not just mish mash of hot men having random sex and trying to bring out some erratic story to big screen. This film tells us the real life story of Pedro, a young AIDs activist who lost his life to the disease at the age of 22.

Pedro, a young Latin guy is diagnosed with HIV at the age of 17. Instead of sulking, he makes a courageous decision to dedicate ret of his life speaking at various events, college etc about HIV and try to create awareness among people. In such a time, MTV asked him to feature in their reality show "The Real World", so that people can know the real Pedro. It i during this phase that he meets the love of his life whom he ends up marrying. Slowly Pedro's health start deteriorating and even before the show could go on air, he is hospitalized. WHile in hospital, he gets so popular for his work he is been doing that he actually gets a call from then President Clinton appreciating all the work he has done. The movie just then focuses on his family, his lover and how they all cope up with his declining health and his ultimate death on the same day as the last episode of the show was aired.

The acting by the lead characters was very good but the narration of the film became a little confusing at some point. They tried to realistically portray how reality TV is show but that actually was just adding to all the confusion. I think the film would have been more affective had they made it a documentary style with real life interviews of eople associated with Pedro's life. More ficus should also have given to all the work that he had done for the community rathr than just talking about it and showing merely his personal life. Acting wise I think there was good chemistry between all lead characters. My favorites were Pedro and his sister.

Watch it because it will make you aware of what not to do in life. (6.5/10)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

He Likes Guys (Short Films)

Another collection of 8 short english films from various film festival circuits.

"Steam" : A super buff party boy gets all steamed up.

"Silver Road" : At the end of an idyllic summer on the farm, Danny finally acts on his desire for his best friend, Mark? What happens next.

"Traces" : Julian dies in a car accident and thats when his father realizes that he was gay and was living in the same city with his boyfriend. Sometimes parental love can trump homophobia; and sometimes the truth comes out too late.

"Just" : Two buff Asian guys (one 23, one 32) have relatively anonymous hot sex after meeting online. The younger man is offended when he finds out that the older one is cheating on his boyfriend. A very well written and beautifully shot short about the ideals of monogamy.

"Laundromat" : 2 guys have just moved in and are having a hard time living together after being boyfriends for 2 years. A chance encounter with an elderly man who lost his partner teach them the value of trying and living each day at a time.

"Seeing You in Circles" : On the night of his 30th birthday Jerome asks his ex-boyfriend Wade to meet him. The insensitive Wade brings along his latest squeeze Cal. This drama is of grown up gay men learning to, well, grow up.

"Waiting for Yvette" : Humorous yet poignant meeting of the Gay Men’s Tuesday Night A.A. Scheduled for her final gender reassignment surgery, will this be Yvette’s last meeting? Or not.

"Babysitting Andy" : The best story of the entire collection. What do you do if you’re 9 years old and nobody will tell you what “fellatio” means? If you’re as devious as Andy, you corner your gay uncle and his boyfriend with a Supersoaker and demand answers. Funny

As is the case with short movies, some are good and others are bad. The god part is that you have have to sit through for more han an hour for the bad films to finish. A decent watch. (5/10)

The Place Between Our Bodies (Short Film)

Sometimes there are films which you end up watching because there is something in the description that make you watch it but ultimately it turns out to be a total disaster. What you watch on screen is no where close to what you read in the synopsis.

A duration of 33 minutes, its a rough film, experimental student sort of thing from 1975. The filmaker explores the nature of sexual obsession using real rough footage cruising some for men who meet his type, whom he becomes obsessed with, has sex with, then moves on to a new stranger to be obsessed with. This is interspersed with footage from vintage gay porn. Then he meets the first boy he has an actual relationship with, and the second half of the film is home footage of his (real life) boyfriend as they live and play together, and ultimately make love. A extended real love making session between the two is filmed, quite graphically (this would be considered real porn by most), and the narrator comes to realize that his sexual obsession is no longer with a type, but with a specific boy. It becomes about love rather than just sex.

The film was rainy, boring and would not even get you horny. Bad. (1/10)

Nighthawks

I guess in 1978 this film was relevant but in today's time when you get to see so many more relevant and issue based gay films, this film just serves as a mere time filler with nothing exciting to offer. Or maybe for a young man like me, I just cant appreciate the cinema of those years.

Set in London, Jim is a 30ish geography teacher. He is an out gay man to any adult with an interest and quietly non-descript to the rest, including his parents. Th film follows his life and daily routine which involves teaching in the school, hanging out with a female teacher in school whom he eventually comes out to and various men he tries to date in the clubs that he often visits. There is nothing more to his in this movie. The only scene that stands out is when his students ask him about him being gay and he rather than being ashamed of it turns it into a sex education session. The movie just ends like this with his daily routine.

I honestly still can't relate to the movie as I am writing this piece. Apparently the director later made a documentary on making of this film but I am going to stay away from that for sure. Oh! one good thing about he movie was how people would reach each other at bars with respect, calm and innocence without any attitude which is otherwise so common in these days.

Boring for my generation but maybe something that an older generation can relate to. (1.5/10)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Apo tin akri tis polis (Greek/Russian) [From the Edge of the City]

This month has been really bad for me as far gay movies are concerned. I dont remember watching any decent film in a while. And now I am adding one more to that list of films. This film is about Russians who migrated to Greece after the demise of USSR. The parents speak mostly Greek, but the teenage children speak a hybrid Russian-Greek language which reflects their lack of identity and marginalization in Greece.

The focal person of the film is Sasha who refers to himself as Rosa Ponds in interview. A beautiful young man with many conflicts he seems to be seeking his identity. He and his friends move from drugs to petty crime to criminal involvement with prostitution (of both gay and straight forms). The boys become involved as both victims and perpetrators of abusive behavior, yet there is something in the nature of Sasha that makes us hope his life will even out. The world he and his gang try to conquer "from the edge of the city" soon hits back mercilessly, and their lives crumble, taking along their dreams and ties of camaraderie.

The only good thing was the good looking Sasha. Thats it. The film started off well promising some good things but after a while it was just boring with some random events in the boys life with no direction or anything. It was boring (2.5/10)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Odete (Portugese) [Two Drifters]

This is one of those films that start well but somewhere down the line gets a little confusing and by the end you really dunno what the director really wanted to say. It was a tiring silly film with overdose of overacting by the lead character.

Pedro and Rui are deeply in love. On their anniversary, Pedro mets with an accident and dies. On the other hand Odete andher boyfriend break up because she desperately wants a child. She starts losing her mind soon after. She pretends that she knows Pedro and his mother (although she is just a neighbor). She sucks off the ring that Rui gifted him from the corpse's body and later hurls herself into his grave, screaming that she can't live without him. She then pretends to be carrying Pedro's baby and starts acting pregnant to everyone. Initially Pedro's mother doesn't believe her but ultimately takes her in when Odete starts spending day and night at Pedro's grave. Rui, meanwhile, struggles to come to terms with his very real loss. He is tormented by the ever crazier Odete, who now begins to transform herself into Pedro. Ultimately Rui takes Odete in and the film ends.

This film was so damn confusing. I had no idea what was going on. Odete was clearly psycho but why would she do all these things is beyond belief. Matters become worse when she starts acting like Pedro and transform into him. Why the hell would someone do that. Just because she wants to feel accepted and loved? I dont know. And by the way, the acting was so terrible that it was unbelievable. I did not like director's earlier film 'O Fantasma' and this one was no better.

Stay away. It will just confuse you. (3/10)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Meatrack / Sticks and Stones


Old 1969 movie that focusses on how relationships were handled in those days. This is a 2 film dvd set but the films were so bad that I am going to write one review for both.

MEATRACK : JC, a bisexual hustler with a mama fixation, sells himself to anyone who'll pay his price: "I said, ten bucks or I'll break your hand!" Turning tricks in the balcony of a movie theater, cruising a bathhouse, or hanging out along The Meat Rack, J.C.'s only interested in cheap sex and quick cash. But when he sees an old coot attacking a Jersey-girl named Jean, J.C. rescues her -- and is immediately forced into making a porno by two knife-wielding transvestites

STICKS AND STONES: Peter and Buddy are throwing a 4th of July Fire Island Party and you're all invited! Leather-Queen George will be there, bragging about his rubber bed sheets. So will The Lavender Guru, a loquacious flower child incessantly babbling hippiespeak, and Bobby, who's "new to this whole thing," will be having a panic attack.

The movie is confusing, boring and just not what I would prefer to watch. Yes it does have old world charm to it and reminds me too much of my trip to Fire Island last year but thats it. I would not want to waste my time it. (1/10)

50 Ways of Saying Fabulous (New Zealand)

A coming of age drama (not another one!) of a 12 year old rowing up boy Billy is the main part of this story. They tred to mix the characters with science fiction was pretty cool but apart from that they have tried to show what kids go through growing up specially n a farm area.

Billy's slight weight problem, his flamboyant personality, and his fondness for costume play has made him a target for bullies at his one-room school, and his only friend is Lou, his tomboy cousin who prefers to play football with the boys and is dreading the onset of adolescence. Instead, he prefers to dream about an imaginary life in outer space. As Billy resigns himself to his status as an outcast, he's assigned a new deskmate -- a new arrival in town named Roy. Roy is a few years older than Billy, and takes an immediate liking to him; however, while Billy is a bit fuzzy about the practicalities of being gay, Roy seems to have a good bit of practical knowledge of the subject and seems keen on pursuing a physical relationship with his new pal. As Billy is torn between happiness at having a new friend and confusion about Roy's level of interest in him, he discovers Roy is also attracted to Jamie, who has just hired on to work at the farm owned by Billy's dad.

"Fabulous" dares to be inclusive with both gender and sexuality issues, recreating the secret world in which kids balancing on the edge of growing up live in. This is a well done period piece featuring three of the most convincing performances by kids. The film is named so because at one point they are describing the traits have gays have and it includes that hey have 50 different ways of saying fabulous.

It was just ok. I did not think too much. (4/10)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Parallel Sons

A classic case of getting deceived by the dvd cover. The cover shows a beefy black torso and no one in the film is remotely close to that. Its sad that this is how the marketing of gay films has to be done.

Seth is a youth with artistic leanings, a fascination with Black pop culture, and a dead-end life in an Adirondack village. He's alternatively sensitive and brutal with Kristen, who wants a sexual relationship that he explosively rejects. Late one night, as he's closing the cafe where he works, a young Black man attempts to rob him at gun point but faints from illness. Seth takes the man, Knowledge, an escapee from a nearby prison, to a family cabin where he nurses him and they begin a tentative friendship. Knowledge sees his only hope for survival as an outlaw being an escape across the Canadian border and the two plan for this adventure, Seth suffering setbacks from a town turned against him, and it is in the escape attempt that the tragedies occur that leave the story with many subtexts.

Maybe my timing o watch this film was not right or something. I read excellent reviews of this film and somehow this film did not do anything for me. I thought it was bad, slow, pointless and everything. Maybe I am missing something that everyone else saw in it. But hey I still am entitled to an opinion.

I did not like it. (2/10)

Innocent (Canada/ Hong Kong)

Made on a low budget, this English/Mandarin/Cantonese film follows the journey of a family who migrate from Hong Kong to Canada. It shows the different trials and tribulations that every member of the family faces after moving to Canada and how this all affects their relationship.

17-year-old Eric migrates to Canada and is thus forced to confront different emotional and cultural problems. He must not only adjust to the new environment, but also come to terms with his homosexuality. Standing at the brink of adulthood, he encounters a series of potential romantic interests - his handsome cousin whom he meets when the family initially stays with them, a schoolmate with whom he becomes great friends but when they kiss once, things change forever, a middle aged lawyer who likes Eric but then he likes every asian boy and finally a kitchen helper. They represent different stages in Eric's development, from infatuation, sex, love to a sense of responsibility. Meanwhile His father and mother are having tensions in their marriage and the father goes back to Hong Kong and they are in the process of getting divorced. The mom befriends a guy in her adult MBA class who ultimately helps her starting up the restaurant. In order to help the kitchen helper , he travels to NY and stays there ready to face challenges of life.

What I thought interesting about this movie was the way they portrayed how a new family gets adjusted to the environment in a new country and cope up with new friends in the area and what challenges life has to offer. Everything else about the movie was strictly ok. (4/10)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Kenedi se zeni (Serbia) [Kenedi Is Getting Married]

Watching this film was pain, almost like torture. Made in a documentary style, the acting was bad, story-line poor and direction was bad (of course all this is my personal opinion). My precious hour and a half completely wasted which will never come back.

Kenedi is in a huge debt after building a house for his family. He finds himself searching for any kind of work to support himself, for as little as 10 EUR per day, a scarce amount to help him relief his debt. Ultimately, Kenedi decides to look for money in sex business. Initially offering his services to older ladies and widows, he expands his 'business' to offer sex to wealthy men. When he finds out about new liberal European laws on gay marriages, Kenedi sees prospects in looking for a "marriage material", to renew his search for a legal status in EU. The opportunity arises during EXIT Music Festival, when he meets Max, a guy from Munich. But Kenedi cannot change his flirtatious behaviour and still has sex with women and men. Both the woman and the man leave him and he goes on a spiritual journey.

I dont feel like writing anything more on this film. It was just bad. Please don't waste your time. (1/10)

Monday, May 4, 2009

Slutty Summer

This was an entertaining film that had laughs and a predictably happy ending. Yes, the characters are stereotypes, but at the same time, the guys are all real people. I know people exactly like these men, and I could see myself in various aspects of these characters.

Hunky writer Markus returns home to find his boyfriend of four years naked with another man. Newly single, he begins waiting tables at a swinging Chelsea hotspot after being recommended by fag hag and friend Marilyn where his co-workers offer conflicting directions on the off-road map to love and lust in New York City. Luke is the smart-talking queen, who recommends his own promiscuous lifestyle as a model for Markus to get over Julian. Tyler, from Europe is a model who wants no part of relationships. Peter, an actor, is a serious young man who is holding out for Mr. Right, who just doesn't seem to be around. The guys talk about everything that gay men in their 20 talk of. One day Markus ends up hooking with Tyler and slowly they start enjoying sex once in a while. Markus likes the company but he knows Tyler is not ready for relationship. But slowly Tyler starts to have feelings for him which he is afraid of. And when he talks to Markus about it, he rejects saying e i enjoying his single free status. Meanwhile Luke continues his whoring around while Peter is still looking for that one man because he cannot share his body with just anyone. Finally the summer is over. Peter has met a man and Tyler is moving back to Europe. He wants to meet one last time to Markus. Peter tells Markus that he should give Tyler a chance because you never know when the right man comes. Just be in the moment. Markus finally leaves with Tyler for Europe.

All the guys were very hot in the film. Acting wise, except Markus, I think others were much better. As a young gay man, I could easily identify with the movie at various levels. The movie might have low budget and low production but it still satisfies you on the entertainment quotient.

You wont b bored. Its silly but fun. (6/10)

Friday, May 1, 2009

Hush! (Japanese)

Sometimes you have no idea what to expect in a movie and they completely surprise you. For some reason I had been avoiding to watch this movie for various reasons but it was time to do so now. And I must admit that it was pretty decent flick considering the fact that the actors didn't have that dumb look on their face which thy usually have.

Naoya and Katsuhiro have a very unlikely gay relationship. Naoya is not out because of his work and is very recluse kind of person. On the other hand Katsuhiro is childlike, very open about who he is and enjoys life. What brings them both together is loneliness and they like each other. Then there is this girl Asako who has a totally fucked up life with drugs, sex and two abortions. On day she decides that one thing that can give meaning to her life is a baby. She sees Naoya in his laboratory and bluntly asks him to be her sperm donor. He wants time to think over it. Katsuhiro is not too comfortable with the idea but agrees to think as well. The three of them hang out together more often and start sharing an unexplainable bond. In all this is a girl at Naoya's office who likes him to the level of obsession. Ups and downs happen in their relationships but Naoya and Katsuhiro stand by each other in difficult times and ultimately Naoya agrees to donate sperm for Asako.

The story is simple but has been directed and dealt with utmost sincerity. It could have been a story of any regular couple with a girl obsessing over the husband and another girl wanting to have baby with him. The relationship between the 2 lead characters creates a sensitive, credible portrait of an attachment in which the personality differences that draw a couple together are also a source of continuous low-level friction. Its clear they love each other. Katsuhiro doesn't like the fact that Naoya would not say no to anyone and keeps everything hanging in the air thereby raising people's expectations but thats just his personality.

I liked the movie very much. Could have ben a little edgier and tight specially towards end. (6.5/10)