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, September 30, 2009

Venkovský ucitel (Czech) [The Country Teacher]

There was something raw, real,fascinating, natural about this movie that I loved. It was not filmy or made up any away. It was very real, the actors were real, story was real, it was different but nice different. With a completely original story line and direction, this movie is worth a watch.

Peter, a gay schoolteacher from from an elite school in capital to tach in the country because he felt dominated by his mother in school. Later we find out that he also broke up with his boyfriend whom he actually never loved. So basically he is trying to run from everything and everyone. Peter who is always depressed soon meets Marie, a farm working widow who has had her troubles in life and her teenage son Lada who is young and beautiful but lives in guilty complex because he thinks he is not smart. He has a girlfriend who comes to visit him every weekend from the city. Together Marie and Lada run a dairy farm. Everyone is frank and open and there is nothing hidden. Marie once shows some interest in Peter but is quickly brushed off. Peter starts getting crush on pretty Lada. He starts teaching him to help him grow hi confidence but one such night he cant control himself and ends up physically playing with the boy. This has a huge very negative affect on the boy's mind. Realizing his mistake soon Peter goes to their house to ask for forgiveness but Lada doesn't want to listen. Since Marie forgive Peter, Lada can't take anymore and runs away from home. His girlfriend refuses to take him in and hence he just wanders around in the city. By now Peter is filled with guilt and the only way out is he dedicates himself to Marie in helping with her farm. He comes back one day but wants to return seeing that Peter is still there but Marie makes him realize that it is important to forgive and let the teacher repent for all mistakes he has done. After few thoughts and situations, Lada gives in. True to the statement "Everybody needs somebody".

There were so many small nuisances in the movie that make it stand out. The interaction between Peter with his parents specially with his father. You gasp in disbelief when Peter comes on to the teenage boy but after all he is human too. Peter plays his part of beaten depressed teacher and later a man filled with guilt very well. Lada as the teenage boy was good too and so was Marie. It looked as if she had been working on the farm for forever. It was so real. Talking about real, the fact that the movie actually showed a calf birth full on was unbelievable.

You have to watch this movie. Different story and marvellous direction. (7/10)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

En Forelskelse (Danish) [Awakening]

This film was actually a short film (about 40-45 minutes) long but it was still beautiful to hold your attention and pass on a message. A sexual awakening of sorts for a young teenage boy.

16 year old Carsten has just started dating Melissa. He is introduced to her parents who have an instant liking for him and they welcome him very warmly in their house. There is a warmth and tension that Carsten finds in her father. On a weekend trip to their summer house, Carsten cant control and ends up kissing her father who returns the favour but quickly backs off. There is then a strange tension between them. Carsten is confused and visits Melissa's house when he knows only her father would be there at home. after initial awkwardness, he starts crying because he is truly confused as to what is wrong with him and he can't figure out. The father gives him his shoulder and empathizes with him and soon they are making out. They are disturbed by Melissa and the mother but no one sees anything. Unable to deal with lies anymore Carsten tells Melissa that he has been with a man and they break up. Carsten then wants to be with her father but he refuses since he has a family and everything. Ev though you can see how much he wants to and is attracted to and likes Carsten. This is a sort of awakening for Carsten who realizes that he might be gay and would never be able to get together with his first love.

Except for the length of this short, it was almost like a full length feature film. The direction was very sensitive and the way the closeness between the 2 actors was portrayed was again shown with great sensitivity without making fun or mockery of anyone. Its time directors made more sensitive films for the gay community and ive us something meaningful to watch rather than all that gay crap that is out there.

This one is a worth watch. (6.5/10)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Cachorro (Spanish/French) [Bear Cub]

I have to say it right away because I can't wait for the end of the post. I loved this movie even though it was my second time. Having a teenage nephew myself and how much I love him, I mostly empathized in the movie with the relationship that uncle and the nephew shared with one another. This is one of those feel good, entertaining but message driven film at the same time which leave you with no complains.

Pedro, a gay bear has avery active social and sexual life which includes parting, drugs, sex etc. One day he finds himself taking care of his 9 year old nephew Bernardo because his sister (a totally mentally fucked up and unstable woman) wants to go for a trip to India with her boyfriend. Initially both the people are reluctant of each other but soon grow into each other's company. Pedro tries to straighten his life a little bit but Bernardo understand everything. He is ok with his uncle being gay. You hart goes out for the kid when he prepares meals for his uncle because his mom asked him to take care of his uncle during his short stay. Soon the sister is put in jail for drugs in India and it seems like it will be more like a long term arrangement between Pedro and Bernardo. Enter Bernardo's grandmother who never had an opportunity to visit him because his mother wouldn't want him to. By now Bernardo doesn't like her at all. Pedro has constructed a new room for him in his house and they both are living very happy. It includes They hanging out with Pedro's friends and everything. The grandmother then decides to take leal action when Bernardo and Pedro dont want him to spend time with her. She digs out Pedro's history where we find out he is positive. They make n arrangement wherein Bernardo is sent to boarding school. Life goes on. Pedro gets sick, is in hospital, grandmother tells Bernardo the truth but he already knew it and blames his grandmother for Pedro's sickness and wishes she was dead. Things dont change too much. Uncle and nephew keep in touch through letters. Eventually few years later, grandmother dies and Pdro and Bernardo and reunited.

Oh my god!! there were so many emotional moments for me in the film. The kid making meal, his crying when he has to leave Pedro, his outburst at his grandma when she tells Pedro is sick really made me cry. On the other hand scenes where Bernardo would hang out with Pedro's friends and you see all these Spanish bear gay man being nice to kid but at the same time leading their own life made me fel lad that maybe someday there is hope for al of us gays out there to live a normal life. The kid was great when it came to acting and so was Pedro. The film doesn't show bears as any different from your regular muscular beefy queens.

I love it and if you like my kind of film, you will love it too. (7.5/10)

A River Made To Drown In

This is one of those films for which after watching I can't decide whether I liked the film or not. There were parts of it that were really interesting (longing for love in your last days) and then parts that were really boring (the theatricality by the lead actor) that overall it leaves just an average impression. Plus with the setting of the film, it is more suited for maybe a play rather than a film.

Allen is a struggling artist who is having an affair with Eva, a wealthy woman who owns a gallery store. He is soon given a surprise visit by Thaddeus, and old man. Not instantly but later you find out that Allen was one of Thaddeus' lover from the days when Allen used to hustle on the road. Thaddeus confines to Allen that he is dying of Aids and wants to spend few days with him. He asks Allen to find Jamie, another hustler on the road whom he loved and whom he thinks he could have passed on the disease to. After initial apprehensions, he agrees and finds Jamie but he refuses to visit Thaddeus. Meanwhile Eva finds out truth about Allen's past which brings a strain in their relationship. In pursuit of finding himself, Jamie and happiness, Allen starts working back on the streets not for money but for love which is now missing since Eva ha left but which h still longs for. Thaddeus tells Allen that he has split all his property between him and Jamie and he really needs to see Jamie. Finally Jamie gives in but he knows that Thaddeus is broke and he has no money to offer. Thaddeus dies and the movie ends with Allen finding inspiration in Jamie for his art.

Let talk about performances: Thaddeus was over the top but maybe thats what his character is required to do. His makeup was perfect. One look and you could tell he is gay. Rest everyone was ok. Allen was not that handsome that everyone will want him. His personality was confused in the film but that actually suited him. The photography of the film was dark most of the times, not liked by viewers by suited for the story.

And while writing this piece, I decided whether I liked it or not. (4/10)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Eating Out

I know I reviewed the sequel first but I had to watch this one again before I could review it. I clearly remember it was my first few gay films that I started watching it and I really liked it but since then (4 years) I have seen so many more better films and crap films as well, for this one I dont know for sure what I thought of it the second time I saw.

After being dumped by girlfriend Tiffany, caleb is sad and mentions to his gay roommate Kyle that is he was gay he could score with women. We are then in a party where fag hag Gwen dumps another guy who tells her he us gay. Her room mate is hot Mark whom Kyle always has an eye on. Caleb likes Gwen, so Kyle says Caleb is gay and Gwen is immediately in him and introduces him to Mark. Kyle figures that Caleb can use Marc to get to Gwen, while Kyle uses Caleb to get to Marc. Also, Tiffani lives next door to Gwen and Marc so seeing Caleb date Marc would make her crazy. After their first date when Caleb and Mark come back home. Caleb is freaked out but Gwen calls them and she seduces him verbally on phone. Mark takes advantage of the situation and gives him a blow job while he is on phone with Gwen. Kyle is very furious when he finds out about this. Meanwhile at some point Caleb also ends up having sex with Gwen. This is followed by a very awkward dinner with Caleb's parents where after initial confusions, things become clear. Gwen goes to Caleb and Mark realizes that its not just physical beauty but nice little things that matter and he gets interested in Kyle.

Interesting story but acting is sooooo over the top, you can't even start mentioning it. Caleb was very underplayed. Gwen was plain stupid and irritating, Mark was so full of himself and Kyle was a typical fag. Tiffany's character of kinky girlfriend was interesting. I gues syou would like the film was frankness, male nudity (full frontal) if you haven't seen many gay films.

If you regularly watch gay films, you might not like it very much and think its stupid. (4/10)

Hijras - The Third Gender (Documentary)

This is a documentary film which tries to educate people and enlighten them on the social outcaste, trials and the plight of hijras that they face in the Indian society. This documentary focusses on interviews, stories and other talks with hijras, social workers on how the life can be improved.

Most hijras are genetically born as men, but believe they are women within. The rest are hermaphrodites with some abnormality in genitalia. For those born men, becoming a hijra is a painful process that involves removing the entire genitalia in a secret ceremony that is often undergone without any anesthetic.
Currently, most hijras have only three ways in which they can make a living: prostitution, begging, and as performing shamans removing bad luck and/or spells from suspicious Indian households. Sex work is one of the only options for hijras because there are few employment opportunities available to them. Hijras are most commonly seen knocking on car windows, begging for money at stoplights. Although hijras are feared for their dissimilarities, they are also revered for their alleged mystical abilities. Most Indian families seek their blessings during any auspicious ceremony such as a birth, a wedding, or the building of a new house.

Very informative and interesting. Something different. (6.5/10)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Searching 4 Sandip

Zero expectations from the film led me to completely like this film that I saw in the recently concluded film festival in NYC. Made in a documentary style, this film was unexpectedly funny with real love and emotions.

The film starts with Australian girl Poppy looking for love after her break up. She turns to internet like most other people and find an Indian girl named Sandip. Incidentally Sandip lives with her Sikh parents and her younger sisters in UK and is not out to anyone. The film then explores their journey (which is true) right from their first meeting in Malaysia where they had decided to take a trip together. After their first holiday, Poppy is not content with anymore long distance stuff and decides to move to Uk hoping that Sandip would be there to help her out. Things are not so smooth as expected. By the time Sandip comes out to her family, she is forced to choose between family and Poppy. She choses Poppy, moves out of her house and they start living together. As expected things slowly come around and everything's well that ends well.

The most emotional core of the movie works because of Sandip's relations with her family. It breaks your heart to see that she has to make a choice. As the two main characters fight for their relationship, it seems ever more remarkable that they found each other online, in the absence of real physical contact. In fact, as the film progresses, the couple’s unconventional meeting fades into the background; they have proven (at least to each other) that such encounters can bear the weight of a fruitful relationship.

I lved it for its simplicity and for it was so natural. (6.5/10)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Poco più di un anno fa (Italian) [Adored: Diary of a Male Porn Star]

Sometimes a film can spring surprise. You read that its about the life of a porn start and you already make up your mind but wait till you actually see the film. It is definitely a good film and worth watch.

The film begins in 2014 with some documentary film makers trying to find details about a porn star Riki who did in 2002. They are trying to get information from Federico who we later find out wis Riki's brother. The movie then goes in flashback. Riki and Federico were born in a rich wealthy family In France but after his mother died, Riki fled home to go to Rome. Since then him and federico had no connection. Their father has now died and Riki comes back home. Federico learns that their fathers estate is in debt and that actually they are not as rich. He also has an ex-wife and a child. Federico wants to learn more about his brother so he decides to go to Rome with him. He sees that his brother makes very good money but doesn't know what he does. Incidentally one day he finds out his brother's picture in a porn magazine and confronts Riki. Riki confesses that he works in gay porn industry and is gay. He is supposedly the best in business and gets paid well. Awkward at first, Federico wants to know more about his brother and meets his friends, his colleagues, watches his shoot etc. The two brothers bond big time without judging each other. With a turn of events, a child comes in Riki's life who he wants to adopt but when the court finds out about his job, they refuse. Riki and the child were so close to each other that it breaks his heart and there his downfall starts. Meanwhile, federico reconciles with his wife and works with her to pay back his father's debt. Depression grips Riki and ultimately he commits suicide. Circa back to 2014, we realize that the person making the documentary is the same little boy whom Riki wanted to adopt.

Very touching and interesting film, this film shows relationships and emotions from a different angle. The bond that the 2 brothers share, a husband getting back to his wife admitting to all his faults, the bond between a gay guy and a child knowing each other very well and the friendship that all these people share with each other. There are few places where it gets tears to your eyes and gleam too when you se the 2 brothers sharing such an amazing bond with each other.

Must watch. This is good. (7.5/10)

I Can't Think Straight

You definitely would not have seen many reviews on lesbian themed movies and the reason is because I rarely watch them. But this one I had to. It had Indian connection to it and to watch gorgeous Lisa Ray in her second film as a lesbian would be interesting.

In the upper echelons of traditional Middle Eastern society, Reema and Omar prepare for the marriage of their daughter Tala. But back at work in London, Tala encounters Leyla, a young British Indian woman who is dating Tala's best friend Ali. Tala sees something unique in the artless, clumsy, sensitive Leyla who secretly works to become a writer. Leyla had always suspected of herself being a lesbian but had been fighting against it by trying t date men but ever since she met Tala, she can't help it. On a trip to Oford, the 2 women end up sleeping with each other. Leyla want some meaning to their relationship but Tala is not so sure considering she is already getting married soon. Leyla comes back home and comes out to her family who of course react very strongly but supportive at the same time. Tala is still confused about the whole thing and ultimately calls off her wedding. She now has to woo Leyla back but she wont hear anything because Tala doesn't have the courage to come out to her family. Of course in the end everything is fine. Tala comes out and her and Leyla share a beautiful relationship.

Lisa Ray as Tala plays her role very beautifully. Sheetal Seth on the other hand acts her part equally convincing as the confused modern girl who ultimately wants to be true to herself and her family. What I liked the best about the film was that it wasn't overdramatic. In fact it seemed funny at times without making fun of anyone. The music was good too. Overall thumbs up for the film.

Watch it. You wont be disappointed. (6.5/10)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Nowhere

The title of this film is totally appropriate because this film actually goes nowhere. Nowhere constantly introduces kinky and eccentric characters, each and every one of them suffering from modern diseases and problems like drugs, eating disorders, nymphomania, hallucinations, aggression and even suicide! Araki even touches the more daily problems like popularity and faithfulness.

Nowhere chronicles a day (and night) in the lives of a group of 20 or more alienated Los Angeles teenagers in their personal lives of despair, alienation, failing relationships and more. Centering on one 18-year-old named Dark, an alienated UCLA film student; his bisexual African-American girlfriend Mel; her purple-haired, acid-tongued lesbian girlfriend Lucifer; Dark's homosexual classmate Montgomery; and Montgomery's poetess friend Alyssa. Other characters include Dark's friend, a queer industrial rock star named Cowboy; his drug-addicted lover and band mate Bart; the local drug dealer Handjob and his live-in S&M girls Kris and Kozzy; the metal-mouthed, wise-cracking intellectual Dingbat; her older brother Duckey, the bulimic Egg; Alyssa's self-destructive twin brother Shad and his girlfriend Lilith; Mel's little brother Zero and his blond girlfriend Zoe, plus a Teen Idol so famous that no one needs to utter his name, a trio of Atari gang members, nattering Valley girls, scary drag queens, a pragmatic party, and a mysterious alien from outer space that only Dark sees.

All the characters are curiously bisexual, which does nothing to serve the narrative except to throw a few predictability curve balls into the narrative drive. This film definitely beats stereotypes and maybe it does depict the way teens and young were being sucked by all the drug and sex but even then it doesn't justify to make a film which has absolutely no purpose in life.

Dont watch it. Save time, money and brain. (1/10)

10 Attitudes

Sometimes I wish I had completely forgotten what films I have seen but not reviewed because that would save me the pain of having to watch a trash movie 2 times. A horrible acting job by the lead character who all h does is complaining and whining, this can be in my list of top 10 unbearable movies.

Josh is a thirties-something gay caterer in a long-term relationship of 10 years when he realizes that his boyfriend has been cheating on him. Devastated and disillusioned, Josh wants to leave West Hollywood and return to Cleveland, but his closest friend Brandon (supports him by promising to arrange ten dates within a weeks' time. Brandon bets Jason will find a new love and remain in West Hollywood. If no new love is found, Jason will return home. Josh begins his arranged dating with 10 of some of the most diverse types everyone who has played the dating game has encountered. None of the 10 "attitudes" works out and Jason is about to depart for Cleveland when things change. He mets a old school buddy who comes out to him saying he is gay. Incidentally this same guy had bullied Josh a lot in school and made his life miserable. He apologizes for what he had been doing and they then have an instant connection and they take the same train ride together to Cleveland.

I have seen low budget movies but some of them have been good but this was outrightly bad and atrocious from production to direction to acting to stereotypes. Gosh!! Where do I stop. Not to mention all the loop holes in the plot.Do yourself a favour and save your money. (except for a few eye candy and thats why the rating)

Completely avoidable. (1.5/10)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

A Jihad For Love (Documentary)

In a time, when Islam is under tremendous attack-from within and without-'A Jihadfor Love' is a daring documentary-filmed in twelve countries and nine languages. Muslim gay filmmaker Parvez Sharma has gone where the silence is strongest, filming with great risk in nations where government permission to make this film was not an option. A Jihad for Love is the first-ever feature-length documentary to explore the complex global intersections of Islam and homosexuality.

Th film follows through the lives of few gay Muslim men and the trials and tribulations that they have ha to face in life because of being gay. They are from various Muslim countries and various society levels. Jihad for Love doesn't seek to vilify or reject Islam, but rather negotiate a new relationship to it. In doing so, the film's extraordinary characters point the way for all Muslims to move beyond the hostile, war-torn present, toward a more hopeful future. The individuals we meet only too briefly in the film are remarkable not just for their courage but in also the honesty with which they approach the camera. The thematic elements of weaving in celebration and despair are remarkable and the filmmaker successfully engages with a wide canvas of possible audience emotions.

Its definitely a film that is an eye-opener. (6/10)

Dong gong xi gong (Mandarin) [East Palace, West Palace]

Now This one is hard to classify as a genre. I will put it as an artsy film and maybe exploration of one self done in a very artistic way. Its definitely not a conventional movie.

A Lan is a gay man, rounded up in a park near the Forbidden City by Xiao Shi, a police officer. The plot involves A Lan's night-long interrogation, involving flashbacks of his hard life. A Lan clearly loves the police officer and I think the officer also through him wants to explore himself and identify his true feelings. Through a series of questions, A Lan talks about his childhood, his encounters with various men at the same time trying to tell Xiao Shi how much he loves him. The police officer shouts at him but is also very amused by whatever he was telling. After a while he lets him go but A Lan refuses to go. The officer then asks him to wear women's clothes. But that also does nothing. Xiao Shi is struggling a lot with himself, whether o 'cur' the gay man or to just give in for the love A Lan prophecies for him. They have a passionate kiss but the officer is still confused and he just walks out thinking. A Lan is happy that at least he was kissed by the man he loves very much.

This movie moves slowly and is only really interesting if you buy into this psychological premise. The title refers to the 2 parks which are famous for gay activities. The performances were ok but there were lot of questions as to why did A Lan tel all those stories about men beating him and having sex, whether that was for sympathy, love or excitement. Plus the film was also very slow at times. The pace could have been faster but I guess the intent was to keep it slow and let the viewers digest n every aspect.

Very different movie. Not for everyone. (3.5/10)