By Jeff Walsh
"The Boys in the Band" is an impressive movie if only for the fact that it exists. The play came out in 1968, the same year as the Stonewall Riots in New York City, which is considered the birth of the modern day gay rights movement. The movie followed two years later, using the off-Broadway cast, and is now celebrating its 40-year anniversary.
I have to say, this movie holds up really well, and there is good reason to watch this to see where we've made progress as a community and possibly where we haven't. But that's for viewers to decide. I'm more interested in the narrative itself.
The movie starts out with Michael preparing to host a birthday party for his friend Harold. While Michael is preparing for the party, his old college roommate Alan calls. Alan is in New York City on business and urgently needs to see Michael. Michael is caught between worlds, with a bunch of loud gay friends set to arrive, and his former roommate (who doesn't know he's gay) needing to talk. Michael also assumes that Alan is gay, and wonders if he's finally going to admit it. They make plans to quickly get together, but then switch to lunch the following day.
By Jeff Walsh
"Ready? OK!" is about a 10-year-old boy named Joshua who, more than anything else, wants to be a cheerleader. He practices routines with the girls, talks to his family about how cheerleaders always work together (unlike the wrestling team the school makes him play on), and is raising money to go to a cheerleading camp.
Of course, Joshua's 10, so the movie isn't about him being gay or coming out, just being different. If anything he's the only character in the movie who's OK with who he is. His mother, who is the main character in the movie, is harried by a job she doesn't like, a brother who drifts around, a mother who enjoys taunting her, and has no time for herself. When her son is getting into trouble cheerleading, or showing up to school in a dress, she barely seems to register what is happening, just that she has one more thing on her plate to handle that day.
The movie was well-acted and looks good, but it doesn't seem to have much to say, really. Plus, it seemed to have a lot of "indie movie grab bag" going on. The gay neighbor who believes in the kid and tries to encourage him. The packrat homeless brother who can't get his life together. The stern nun who only follow the rules. The clueless, diva who does horrible stand-ups for the local TV station. You never get the sense that all of these things solidify into one movie.
By Jeff Walsh
"Pedro," which airs on MTV and LOGO tonight (April 1) is the story of Pedro Zamora, a Cuban-American who found out he was HIV-positive at age 17, and took his desire to speak out to a huge audience as a member of MTV's The Real World. He died in 1994, several hours after the season finale ended.
The movie itself was a strange flashback for me, since his story was so urgent to me at the time and so many of the scenes from that season are burned into my memory. So, it was somewhat strange seeing actors portraying people I knew from a reality TV and recreating famous scenes. At first, it almost seemed like the movie could star Pedro himself, but then the story becomes bigger than his brief time on the show, and we learn about his life before The Real World.
The First and Last Time (A poem about HPV)
Simple are your kisses that fall upon my face
Gentle are your hands...warm is your embrace
Magical this evening
That I share with you
I am so unprepared
Not knowing what you will do
Careful are your words
You whisper in my ear
Telling me to touch you
Telling me not to fear
Your hands run over me like water
I am unsure what to feel
I kiss you back though I am scared
Helpful suggestion: build your vocabulary.
I'm working on creating an educational panel at school, where a bunch of people are qualified to speak about GLBT issues...
I met Whit's boyfriend today.
I really have to say that I'm glad to be finally somewhat involved in his love life. Before, we didn't have that. I guess the fact that I'll be going away for college kind of resonates in our minds for our friendship. Or maybe the kid is growing up or something. Maybe I am.
He's going to be one of the first people I kidnap to spend a weekend with me in the dorms.
Does anyone even understand what the hell is up with the terms carpet muncher and fudge packer... honestly. Those terms just piss me off. I mean, we can reclaim terms like fag and dyke. But who wants to reclaim the other two, and honestly who came up with them. I'm sorry this post isn't really well thought out, but these terms have just been bothering me and I want to know other people's thoughts on them or anything really. I don't have much of an adgenda with this one, except why? And what the hell? Put downs can be so moronic, and then they just become even more moronic. It's really phenomenal.
::laughter dying down into humming noises:: Hmmmmm... mmmhmmmhmmm... Oh, that was just enjoyable... hmmmhmmm...
Well, as I was waiting for my school to finally close this evening, I decided to browse through the XY personals, and I don't think that I've had this much fun laughing and crying because of my empathy for people since... well... since that MTV's "Made" this morning about the football player who wanted to be an opera singer and had absolutely NO sense of pitch, let alone ANY talent for singing. (I admired him for trying, but I thought it was ridiculous that the people kept telling him he was so good when he still needed a LOT of work. I mean, they gave him "Aura Lee" as his piece. "AURA LEE"? That's an audition piece for a regional choir! That's singing basics. "Aura Lee"... Wow, I was so embarassed for him I was laughing and tearing up and making a scene. It was very intense for me.)
And no, this is not photocopying of poRn...JB....