Monday, May 2, 2011

My Top 5 "Gay" Themed Movies

A friend of mine asked me what some of my favorite "gay" themed movies might be. First of all I don't think of movies as being "gay" or "straight", but with that said there are movies who's main characters are gay and the stories revolve around a gay lifestyle... so I figured I'd blog and let everyone know my top 5 favorites.

Alot of "gay" themed movies are dramatic and depressing as they deal with coming out, or HIV/AIDS or bigotry and normally end on a somber note. I'm not saying that I don't like these types of movies but there is a time and place for movies like that. I look for funny, romantic comedies, which are hard to come by... at least the good ones.

So here is my list of favorite "gay" themed movies.

#5 - Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss - Billy, a struggling young gay photographer (who likes Polaroids), tired of being the "other man", falls in love with Gabriel, a waiter and aspiring musician who is probably straight but possibly gay or at least curious. Billy tries to get Gabriel to model for his latest project, a series of remakes of famous Hollywood screen kisses, featuring male couples, while also trying to win his affections.

This was a cute and fun movie staring Sean Hayes (before he was Jack on Will and Grace). The story is simple and the acting is good. It's light hearted with it's moment of drama and unlike most movies there is a happy ending.

#4 - Broken Hearts Club - A group of gay friends in West Hollywood lean on each other to work their way through gay life, not always with success. They gather around Jack's Broken Hearts restaurant and lounge, Jack acting as their father figure and the coach and head cheerleader behind the inept Broken Hearts softball team.

This was my very first "gay" themed movie that I had seen and I wasn't even out of the closet yet. So this movie hold a special place in my heart. It's a slice of life kind of story. It's the kind of life I always wanted with a group of friends that I have always wanted. It's funny, sad, mellow dramatic and all around great movie.

#3 - Touch of Pink - Alim is an Indo-Canadian man currently living in London, England, the move in order to get away from what he feels is his repressive life in Toronto under the watchful and critical eye of his widowed mother, Nuru. For Nuru, the perfect public Muslim persona is the most important thing in life. Back in London, Alim is free to live openly a gay man, of which his mother is not aware. He is in a loving relationship with his live-in British boyfriend, Giles. To navigate through his complicated life, Alim uses the spirit of Cary Grant as his confidante and advisor. Feeling like her life is missing a daughter-in-law, Nuru decides to reconnect with Alim in London. Not yet ready to tell his mother of either Giles or his homosexual orientation, Alim, with Giles' support, hides any aspect of this fact for Nuru's visit. But as Giles is tested one turn after another during Nuru's visit, both Alim and Nuru begin to understand what is truly important in their lives leading to true happiness.

LOVE this movie, it's tough not having it as #1 or #2. This is a very sweet and funny movie. I love the two main characters relationship, I like how they portray the struggle of coming out to family and of course I'm a sucker for a happy ending and this one has one of the best and funniest.

#2 - Guys and Balls (Manner wie wir) - This movie is in German with English subtitles. Ecki lives with his parents who own a bakery in Boldrup, a (fictitious) small German town near Dortmund. Football (Soccor), the German national pastime, is particularly popular in this heavily industrialized region and Ecki has been an avid and successful player since his childhood days. In a decisive game, he fails to keep a ball and is then evicted from the team, with his mistake being used to cover the real reason—the revelation that he is gay that comes about when he is observed by some of his teammates kissing another man on the mouth. Ecki is defiant and immediately sets out to form his own team and beat his ex-teammates at their game.

I've seen a lot of foreign "gay" themed movies and most are extremely depressing but when I heard about this one I actually seeked it out and found out it was playing at a local theater in Hollywood. I figured Harry would get a kick out of it since it's in his native language and there was just something so charming about the main character. I walked out of that theater with a huge smile on my face. I loved every minute of this movie. It's funny, sad, romantic, heart wrenching, heart warming and just so darn cute. This movie is so well done that you honestly don't need to read the sub-titles and still understand what is going on. The main character Ecki played by Maximilian Br├╝ckner is so charismatic and charming you can't get enough of him.

#1 - Big Eden - Big Eden is a tiny fictional town in northwestern Montana. Timber and Cowboy country. This is the story of Henry Hart, a successful New York Artist, who returns to the town of his childhood to care for the ailing grandfather who raised him. Back in Big Eden, Henry must come to terms with his relationship to Dean Stewart, his best friend from high School, as well as the object of his unrequited love. All these years Henry has been pining for a dream image of Dean from back then. This is also the story of Pike Dexter, the shy, unassuming Native American owner of the town's general store, who is as surprised as anyone to find himself falling in love with Henry. The people of Big Eden conspire and attempt to bring Henry and Pike together.

This is one of my all time favorite, not only "gay" themed but of all romantic dramady. This movie is just a great movie plain and simple, who's main character just happens to be gay. Maybe I love this movie because I would love to live in this beautiful, well adjusted, open minded town. Were love is love that's all that matters. The acting is superb, the story is great, there are sad moments, but always laugh out loud moments. We've all had unrequited love so you can easily identify with the main character. You experience the joy, the heard break and finally love that each character has for each other. This is truly and incredible movie.

Here are some honorable mentions:  Get Real (great coming of age story) - Love, Valour, Compassion (sweet, fun but also tragic) - Latter Days (a nice coming to terms story) - Jeffery (very socially minded flick, HIV?AIDS story) - Trick (simple but very cute movie) - Longtime Companion (slice of life, balled like a baby, extremely sad and heart breaking)  - Brokeback Mountain (Heart wrenching story).

4 comments:

  1. I was thinking about this the other day, realised that I have quite a few favourite 'gay themed' films, pretty much all of them comedy.

    1) Love! Valour! Compassion!
    2) La Cage aux Folles (and The Birdcage)
    3) Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
    4) The Kids are Alright
    5) But I'm a Cheerleader!
    6) Fried Green Tomatoes

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  2. I can't agree with you more on the choice of 'Big Eden.' It's completely unrealistic but I just love it.

    My I also suggest 'Edge of Seventeen' and 'Orlando' which stars Tilda Swinton.

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  3. Thank you so much for posting this list. I do a movie-review twitter, and this week, in honor of New York's big news, I want to do only reviews of gay films. Most of the lists of "Must-see!" gay films are packed with serious stuff, which generally isn't my bag, and this list will certainly make it easy to have some funny movies in with the hard stuff!

    P.S. Has anyone told you you look remarkably like Galen Tyrol on BSG?

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  4. I've been watching 'LGBT' themed movies for quite a while now, but mostly now than ever since I'm stuck in bed. I'm trying to watch at least half of all 'gay' movies ever made before the summer is over. And your Top 5 are five movies I didn't even see yet.
    Also, I suggest;
    1) Make The Yuletide Gay
    2) Adam & Steve
    3) Outing Riley
    4) You Should Meet My Son
    5) Oy Very! My Son Is Gay!
    As very good comedy/drama/happy-ending movies. They are just amazing.

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