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.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Available Men (Short Films collection)

Another in series of short films, the title of this dvd is based on the first short story itself.

"Available Men" - A desperate Hollywood agent named Rob goes to an L.A. hotel to meet Stephen, a young writer with a hot new screenplay. Meanwhile, a mild mannered artist named Steve goes to the same hotel to meet a shy young accountant named Rob on a blind date. Mistaken identities and what follows.

"Straight Boys" - Ben thinks he’s found true love in his straight college roommate Morgan who also loves him but is straight. Being honest with Morgan may be Ben’s straightest path to happiness, regardless of the outcome. My favourite among all

"Hello, Thanks" - Andy is having quite a year in the personal ads. Its an amusing and bittersweet look at the fine art of writing personal ads to summarize yourself and attract others.

"Tumbleweed Town" - In this animated cowboy tale, Todd hitchhikes through the Texas desert seeking true love.

"Irene Williams: Queen of Lincoln Road" - This is an entertaining portait of a extraordinary Miami Beach old lady with unique fashion style and flare and her friendship with a gay man.

"Sissy French Fry" - The annual student body president election at the wildly eclectic and diverse West Beach High School pits the quirky, much-beloved incumbent Sissy Frenchfry against a handsome, charismatic and socially intolerant transfer student with a devious plan to restore the status quo.

"The Underminer" - The lead actor plays both roles in the short film about those masters of passive-aggression who spin their friends into self-doubt and panic with every encounter.

Except for the first two stories, rest two were total time pass and no good at all. But then the first and second were really really good from acting, direction and story concept. Watch those two and avoid others. (4.5/10)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Lokas (Spanish/Mexico and Chile)

I usually like these kind of films; a mix between comic, interest, a bit of romance and here and there awkward situations. This mix pretty much makes a viewable experience for me. This movie has most of it but some kind of zing was missing. Something that will hold on to your mind even after the movie is finished.

Charly lives with his 9-10 year old son Pedro alone after his wife passed away. After a series of run-ins with the law when he has to spend few nights in jail, he is packed from Mexico city by his mother to go and live with his father whom he hasn't seen in last 38 years. Both Charly and Pedro dont know what to expect. When they reach, they meet papa Mario who is now out and openly faming gay and has a living partner Flavio who is more Charly's age. Viewers by now know that CHarly is homophobic but Pedro is cool with everything. Charly tries to explain him that they are just friends and working on a play together but Pedro knows that they are gay and are a couple and he likes that fact. Because of his past, no one will give Charly a job until Flavio arranges for a job for him in a gay bar with the condition that he has to act gay. Charly has no choice but to agree. Charly struggles through gay attention in the bar and at the same time gets hots for the manager Liliana working in the bar who thinks of him as a god friend. They even have sex one night when they are drunk and want to experiment. Not giving into the owner's advances, Charly's secret is soon out and he then decides to leave his father's house because he is still homophobic. Pedro is sad and he ends up jumping in the river. Charly and Mario save him and hence their bond increases. The film then ends with Charly being very friendly with Flavio, Mario like a family. Liliana coms back and asks for forgiveness and Pedro introduces everyone to his girlfriend.

The ending of the film seemed pretty rushed to me. But the fun part was they showed how gays are treated and looked upon as in Mexico. The other thing was showing typical flaming characteristics of gays. In other areas, chemistry between Mario and Flavio was fun with constant love-hate relationship. Pedro was very funny too specially when he actually understands what's going on but Charly tries to bluff him with random stories. Acting by everyone was on spot and professional. A proper and more thought of ending would have taken the film to a higher level. (Trivia: Lokas is the bar where Charly works)

Definitely worth a watch. You wont be bored for sure. (6.5/10)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

And, There You Are

This one was just an ordinary movie. What was new and interesting for me the whole southern accent which kept me going through the movie. After a while, the stories got repetitive. The end was very much expected.

Ray is a successful businessman who is rich and runs a furniture business. He has always been attracted only to straight men and thats the reason he visits his shrink often to just go through his tribulations. The movie essentially walks us through some of the straight men he has ben with and how and why they left him. First is a drunk straight men who when he realizes what he did in the night just leaves. Second , another guy whom he makes work at his store but who ultimately uses him just for money and luxury an dhis always busy with his girlfriend. Ray soon comes to senses and asks him to leave. Next is another hottie whom he meets outside a store and they are going good until during one filming commercial, they reveal their sexual status and it infuriates him and leaves. Next Ray meets a waiter named Brian. Brian loves what Ray does to him but also loves his girlfriend. After a series of going back and forth between Ray and girlfriend, ray had enough of Brian and he doesn't want to have anything to do with him. ALthough you now that Brian cares for Ray just because he excites him sexually. Finally Ray meets another waiter who eventually turns out to be the man he was looking for.

This quirky slice of life comedy, based on actual events, is packed with great characters, sexy men and even a few girls. There's always another man around the next corner, and Ray turns lots of corners. Acting was pretty lame and you can tell they were not seasoned actors or maybe not a seasoned director. And honestly men were not even that good looking. What I failed to understand is the point of lusting for straight men and then getting frustrated if they go to girls. Hello!! thy are straight and men goto girls.

A time pass movie. Could be avoided. (3/10)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Yong jiu ju liu (Hong Kong) [Permanent Residence]

I cant decide whether I liked the movie or not. Actually I did like the movie but its kinda hard to decide to what extent. The movie was very touching and emotional in parts but hen there were scenes which were just unnecessary and thy were just dragging the film specially towards the end.

Ivan has had a tough childhood. He was brought up by his grandmother and they both shared a great bond until is parents decide to move to Hong Kong. The grandmother believed in astrology and as per a prediction Ivan wont live beyond 30. Ivan starts working in a software industry very early in life and is a very hard working guy. On a talk show he makes friends with Josh, a student from Tel Aviv who questions Ivan' sexuality. They become friends 'with benefits' and share great chemistry but Josh keeps reminding Ivan that he is just a friend. Ivan one day meets a guy called Windsor in a gym. They both hit off instantly. But soon Ivan realizes that Windsor is straight, he doesn't know what to do. Even Windsor likes Ivan just not sexually. They decide to continue their friendship against all odds and Ivan would not leave a chance to try and get Windsor to get physical with him. Their chemistry is exactly like a gay couple and they do everything together except having sex. Windsor also has a girlfriend in China. Time passes on. They have fights, they get back together but once their fight gets serious. This is the time when Windsor's mom gets really sick and Ivan takes care of her like a dutiful son and everyone knows that Windsor and Ivan are great friends. Eventually they both go on their paths. Ivan moves to Australia and becomes successful film maker. After years he meets Windsor again and again proposes to him. Windsor says that Ivan is the love of his life but not in a way that Ivan wants him to be. Windsor is very affected by al this and he eventually commits suicide. Ivan realizes that he will have to live and maybe die all alone. In his big mansion, he has coffins in every room which he thinks of as his permanent residence and during very late years of his life (in his 80s), he just lies down and wants to die.

Like I mentioned the movie was very touching in some parts. Very well directed. The relationship between the protagonists was established really well although its very very hard to imagine such a closeness between a straight man and a gay man specially when you are naked with each other so many times. There is lot f nudity in the film which I dont mind because the boys are cute. Acting wise they are nice. Friendship between Ivan and Josh is also shown from a very deep level. The film talks heavily sub consciously a lot about friendship and loneliness at the same time.

By the tim I wrote this piece, I figured out what I thought of the movie in totality. Definitely worth watching once. (6/10)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Homo Father (Polish)

It was a different movie, in the sense that by the end of the movie I was questioning about the theme of the movie. Was it about gay love, parenting, social stigma, gay bashing or something completely different. There is something inherently wrong with a film if the audience has to question the very basics of the film. The film might not be bad in itself but still.

Gabriel and Robert are a couple living together for years. They have a lovely relationship. Robert is not out to his family but Gabi is in your face gay and wants Robert to be comfortable with what he is. Robert is in the process of finding a job but him being gay comes out and he has to quit. In the meantime, an old friend of their Natalie shows u with a young girl Amelie and tells Gabi that he is her father and she wants him to take care of her. Because of his job and constant bickering by Gabi and now Amelie, Robert loses control and hits Gabi. He leaves home but misses him and wants to come back. he is gay bashed on his way and Robert realizes how much he also loves him and misses him. Natalie comes back to get Amelie saying she misses her.

A small simple film of less than an hour, you can se that the film really did not have a point to make. Interactions between Robert and Gabi were very real though. Specially when they fight and keep moving from one room to another is very sweet. Did I mention that Robert I think was very very good looking with his glasses and stubble. Acting overall was good. Film hardly leaves an impact on you.

Neither good nor bad. (4/10)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Big Eden

I have seen this film 2 times before and was itching to watch it for the 3rd time for a few reasons. One I wanted to see it with my boyfriend and secondly so that I can review it on my blog because this one happens to be my al time favorite gay film in all the years I have been following gay cinema. People will say that Brokeback Mountain beats all films but I think either you haven't seen this film or you are not as romantic as I am.

Henry is a successful artist in Manhattan. When his grandfather has a heart attack, he comes back to his hometown 'Big Eden' where everyone has missed him. The community in the city is a very close knit community and it is ok be gay. No one judges you for that. Al characters are very 'normal', they dont involve in gay bashing, people dont go to gay clubs and everyone just loves everyone. Grace is one such elder woman who has high regards to Henry's grandfather and teaches in school. She knows Henry is gay and keeps telling him to tell his grandfather Sam about it but he is not sure about it. When Henry comes to Big Eden he finds out that his school friend Dean is also back in town who is now separated from his wife and has 2 kids. Henry had huge crush on Dean and had to go through years of therapy to get over him. Its been 18 years since these close friends saw each other. They both are very happy to see each other and clearly Henry still has some feelings for him. Then there is this store in the town run by Pike. There are some 7 lazy people who are always sitting there. When Grace first introduces Pike to Henry, we se that Pike gets very uncomfortable. We dont understand why. But slowly things start to unfold. Pike is assigned the task to deliver home cooked food by some lady to Henry's house because they can't cook. But he never stays back for dinner even after constant requests by both Henry and Sam. When he realizes that they are getting tired of that food, he learns to cook and cooks an amazing meal every day for them without they realizing where it is coming from. After a few events, we realize that actually Pike is deeply in love with Henry and all he wants is for things to be nice for Henry. Henry slowly realizes this and like Pike too but is struggling with his passion for Dean which is slowly fizzing out. Both Henry and Pike are shy in professing their liking for each other. Things change when grandfather Sam dies. Henry is depressed that he was never able to come clean to his grandfather and that now there is no reason he should stay back there. But clearly every single member f the town loves him and wants him to stay back. Henry indirectly professes his liking to Pike but also tells him that he is leaving back to NY. It breaks Pike'e heart but in the end Henry realizes that he has been running away from the happiness and people that he was always wanted to something that he doesn't even like. The ending of the movie is beautiful.

There are so many things that are notable about the movie. There are no stereotypical gay characters. It could be the story of any person and in this case the character just happens to be gay. Pike's reaction for his love is something we have not witnessed before. He loves Henry so much that just the thought of being close to him or talk to him scares him to death. You realize this beauty when you watch the film. The friendship between Dean and Henry is also beautiful. Dean wants to do and be everything that Henry wants him to be (even including kissing Henry) just so that he can be friends with him as they used to be. He considers him as family. The interactions betwen the supporting cast, the family atmosphere, the love, the caring, elderly people helping Pike to cook to impress Henry, old lady trying to set up Henry with first girl and then boy after she realizes he is gay. Even watching the 3rd time, the scene between Henry and grandpa when he asks whether he wants to tell him something still breaks my heart and I cry every time when he says that I didn't raise you to be ashamed of anything. I am getting choked even while writing this. Each character was so normal, so not gay but so lovable and someone you would want to be. Everyone wishes to be loved the way people in the community loved each other. And the best part is they never ever mention the word gay in the film. Its all subdued and understood.

I think I need to stop now. I can go on and on about this one. If you have not seen this one yet, do it NOW. Make it your first priority. EXTRAORDINARY for a gay film. (9.5/10)

Trick

The story of this film is actually very simple but I guess that the beauty of this film. Sweet and simple yet very identifiable, believable and enjoyable. I didn't remember much of the film since the last time I saw it except the fact that I liked it. Watching it again helps me to review it on my blog and also see whether I still think the same about the movie or not.

Gabriel is an aspiring musician who wants to write musicals. His best pal is his girlfriend Tori whom he has known for ages, who is annoying, pushing but someone whom you can never move on from. One night Gabriel meets Mark, a journalism student who works as go go boy to earn money and he does have a hot body to prove it. They decide to have a hook up and go back to Gabriel's place but Tori is there getting her printouts done. Gabriel and Mark sit their uncomfortable trying to ignore Tori and doing small talk unconsciously they are getting to know each other better. By the time Tori leaves, Gabriel's room mate walks in with his girlfriend and demands the room to that they can be together. Mark and Gabriel have to go out. They keep looking for a place to go and have some fun. They goto a club hoping to meet Gabriel's friend for his appt key but that plan also fails. The whole night keeps passing along between them trying to make out but in the process getting to know each other as person before they consummate. The night includes some unpleasant events too when a drag queen tries to tell Gabriel that Mark is nothing but hart breaker but ultimately things fall in place.

Like I mentioned the story is simple but the way it has been told is still very refreshing even after years of the release of the film. Acting by Gabriel (extremely cute and boyish with dimples), Tori (superb performance) and Mark (hot body) is all good. They all do their parts very convincingly and act very well and natural. The two main figures are surrounded with a bevy of offbeat, slightly quirky characters who make up Gabe and Mark's worlds in the form of best friends, roommates, former lovers, business associates etc which makes it very believable.

Despite the emphasis on sex and one night stands, Trick is really a delightful romantic comedy which you will enjoy. (7.5/10)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Art of Being Straight

This is one of those films which was made just for the heck of it. The producer and director just randomly thought, why don't we make a movie and there; a script was ready without giving much thought into it. The film just doesn't strike a chord with you at any level.

John has always been a womanizer. Having broken up with his girlfriend, he moves form NY to LA with his old friend who lives with his friends. Crashing on his buddy Andy's couch is a comforting return to the college patterns of partying, womanizing and trash talk with the guys. He reconnects with his old friend Maddy who introduces him to her lesbian lover. An aspiring photographer, John takes an entry-level position at an ad agency, determined to prove himself. Things get a little confusing when Paul, a successful executive at the firm, takes a special interest in John, and when John ends up in Paul's bed, his world is turned completely upside down. H doesn't understand what is going on with him. He still is fascinated by girls. On the other hand, Maddy gets really close with her newly moved in neighbor and starts questioning her own sexuality. She tries to get sexual with him but son realizes that she is really gay. Meanwhile, John tells his best friend Andy that he slept with a guy but he is not sure what to take of it. Andy's reaction is very normal and nothing extraordinary. The film ends with all friends just sitting and chit chatting.

You are left with the question whether John is straight, gay or bisexual. Everyone can have their own interpretation and I think that was the idea behind vague ending. By the way, the circle of friends did not look at all straight. Anyone who see them would think they are gay. Like I mentioned I dont think there was definite purpose behind the film. Even the idea of exploring one's sexuality has been done to death and this one brings nothing special to the audience.

Can be avoided. (3.5/10)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Avril (French)

Let me clarify some things first. This is not a gay film. One of the main characters happens to be gay. Thats about it. The film does not focus on his sexuality nor does it judge him or people around him by it. Even though the character is gay, it is shown as if it is absolutely normal and that no more value should be given to the gay aspect.

Avril is an orphan girl who has grown up with nuns in a remote village. She is very fond of painting but can't pursue her passion because of her surroundings. The head sister decides that now she needs to give herself completely to lord and as part of the process she will have to live in seclusion for 2 weeks but one other nun who has always looked out for Avril tells her that wen the church found her, she also had a brother who was given to an orphanage and maybe during these 2 weeks Avril should go look for him and then decide what she wants to do with her life. She runs from there and meet a very helpful man Pierre who helps her find her brother. She meets her brother David and his boyfriend Jim at a beach where they have been vacationing. After knowing the truth David and Avril want to know more about each other and spend time with each other. Avril slowly comes out of the shell with support from David, his lover and Pierre who likes her but would not do anything to ruin whats between them. He even pursues her to paint more. We slowly see Avril's growth from a shy church girl who is scared of water to eventually going nude in ocean but there is nothing vulgar about it. The scene shows her coming out of the shell she has been living. Towards the end of 2 weeks she comes back to her church with the 3 men. The good sister meets them again and we are tld a secret that she happens to be the mom of both the kids and why it happened what happened. When the head nun finds out she gets crazy and attempts to kill the serious nurse thereby injuring Avrill who ultimately gets well. In the process the kids and the mother get closer and Avril finds love in Pierre.

Like I mentioned before, My favorite part was not putting gayness or David being gay anything special or out of normal. You would assume that a church girl would be shocked to find her brother gay but her reaction is very normal to meet his lover. Even Pierre's equation with Avril and the 2 men is very heartening. It feels warm to see that things can be normal if you try to portray them that way. The film is little slow but it grows on you. There is a warmth , a coolness , a certain 'thehraav' about it which is instantly likable.

I loved the movie and if you by now know the kind of movies I like, you would like this too except dont expect any cheap gay stuff. This one is for emotions. (6/10)