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.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Mardistan (Hindi/English) (India) (Documentary)

Mardistan (Macholand) explores what it means to be a man in India. I was under the impression that this documentary would focus more on the gay aspect of men in the country but I was disappointed. Though they touch upon the subject in a minor segment but overall the documentary does try to enlighten the fact of what it means to be a man in India, a nation increasingly defined by social inequality and gender related violence.

There are 4 main protagonists in the documentary whose life story we get to hear. Interestingly they represent different phases of generation as well. First we have a middle-aged writer trying to make sense of the physical and sexual abuse he witnessed studying in an elite military academy and the shock he goes through. He grows up confused as to what real meaning of manhood is. Secondly we have a Sikh father of twin daughters resisting the pressure to produce a son. And we find out this is because he was born when his father was quite old. The social pressure of having a son to take your legacy forward is still very much prevalent in India. Then we meet a young 20ish college student looking for a girlfriend with whom he can lose his virginity. He talks about what girls want these days and how it is not the easiest thing to have a girlfriend. He also talks about the fact of losing virginity is a big social pressure among the friend circle. If you don’t do it, you are called names. Finally we have a working class openly gay man who is married to a woman and has children as well. He came out to his wife but continued to stay married for her and kids sake. , and a working-class gay activist coming out to his wife after twenty years of marriage. The documentary starts a conversation on critical issues including patriarchy, son preference, sexual violence and homophobia in a nation increasingly defined by social inequalities.

I would say that the idea behind the documentary is interesting but you really cannot generalise anything in a country like India. A country with 1.2 billion people and growing will have all sorts of views and opinions and it would be unfair to judge anyone through these 4 people. They have interesting stories to tell and does bring to light few interesting aspects of what does it mean to be a “man” in Indian society. One other thing glaringly missing in the documentary is total lack of female point of view. What about the women in their lives and where do they fit it. That hasn’t been talked about. Also what about the machoism aspect where men treat women as slaves and servants and object of desire. Why don’t we talk about that?

As I said, decent idea but grossly missed opportunity. (4/10)

Friday, July 22, 2016

Saugatuck Cures

These days I barely am getting time to watch films. It breaks my heart because there is so many films to see and once in a while when I do get time, I hope that the film is a good one. So imagine, when you end up watching some bad spoof in the name of comedy with loopholes plenty. The intent probably is nice but its a very bad execution.

Maggie runs a bed and breakfast in the town of Saugatuck. The planned thanksgiving dinner does not go well with her gay son Drew and her stuck up daughter Penelope, who thinks Drew needs to pray for his sins. She brings with her, her fiance Paul and we also have Brett, who is Drew’s best friend and also Penelope’s ex.  It turns out that Maggie’s cancer has come back but the said procedure will take a lot of money. Penelope refuses to help. Brett comes up with an idea of travelling church to church pretending to cure latent homosexuality and raise money for Maggie’s procedure. They start making money in ludicrous and over the top acting, until one day their money gets stolen. In the meantime Drew discovers that Penelope’s finance Paul is closet gay and they fall in love (huh!). When Drew and Paul try to steal Penelope’s money , they get arrested and are put on trial. Surprise surprise, Penelope has a change of heart, takes her case back and family is back together.

The big problem of the film is that we don’t care about any of the characters. none of them, emotionally or emphatically. They are all so over-the-top in their familiar jokes so as to barely even register that its probably a satire, which it is. Every character is cliche. I mean whoever watches gay films could predict that Paul is closet gay and soon enough he and Drew will have something going. Penelope’s character on the other hand was a mere caricature and deeply annoying. No explanation on why so much hatred for gays and her mom and why sudden change of heart. Only actor bearable is the friend Brett and that too because he is supposed to be stupid and is in fact stupid. So you don’t mind. Trying to address the issue of religion and homosexuality is a good thought but if not executed right, it sometimes could further damage.

The film misses its mark on a lot of accounts and felt a bit waste of my time. (3.5/10)