By Jeff Walsh
So, I requested to be sent screeners of the "youth" movies being shown at Frameline, San Francisco's LGBT film festival, which is currently happening in San Francisco. I'm not certain if this is indicative of the larger programming this year, but the films I received nearly all focused on trans and gender identity issues, which will certainly appeal to a lot of people on the site here.
Keep in mind, these movies are just playing the festival circuit now, so you may have to hunt down when they are playing a festival near you, and the wait may be a bit longer for a DVD release.
Here's a breakdown of the films I received:
By Jeff Walsh
Rory O'Malley has a hard time accepting being gay eight times a week.
As Elder McKinley in The Book of Mormon on Broadway, he ends up doing a big tapdance number to "Turn It Off," about his "cool little Mormon trick" of turning his gay thoughts off "like a light switch."
Offstage, he couldn't be gayer. In addition to his role in the hottest Broadway musical, from South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, for which he is nominated for a Tony Award as Best Featured Actor in a Musical, O'Malley is also one of the co-founders of Broadway Impact, along with Gavin Creel, which unites the Broadway community to work toward marriage equality.
The Book of Mormon is a collaboration between Parker, Stone, and Robert Lopez, one of the people behind Avenue Q. The show is nominated for 14 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. The more I saw interviews with Rory O'Malley leading up to the Tonys, the more he seemed like someone who needed to be featured in Oasis. He always comes across as so thankful, open and heartfelt that it honestly wasn't a huge surprise he got cast as a squeaky-clean Mormon. After all, he is the guy who whitened up Eddie Murphy's "Cadillac Car" song in the Dreamgirls movie until it had all the soul and bite drained out of it.
So, O'Malley and I jumped on the phone recently, to chat about his life, career, as well as being gay and spiritual. Here's what we said:
By Jeff Walsh
When I moved to San Francisco in 1996, one of my first purchases was a trade paperback of Armistead Maupin's "Tales of the City," from the recently-closed gay bookstore in the Castro. I'd previously watched the PBS mini-series, but it seemed a necessary book to read upon moving here. The book begins with Mary Ann Singleton, in San Francisco on vacation from Cleveland, calling her mother to say she isn't coming home, she's staying in this enchanted city.
To fans of the book, Mary Ann, Michael "Mouse" Tolliver and Anna Madrigal aren't mere literary characters. Mary Ann is the eyes of the piece that clearly see the magic of San Francisco. Mouse is its heart yearning for connection. And Anna is its soul welcoming us unconditionally with joints taped to our apartment doors, whose 'anything goes' attitude is earned through her life experience.
They are an important part of our lives, and capture the magic and allure of a city where people come to redefine themselves, find love, build community, and explore... well, pretty much anything they want to.
So, going to see a new musical based on "Tales of the City," featuring music from members of the Scissor Sisters, and both the writer and director behind Avenue Q, had me of two minds. I couldn't wait to see it, but I was also nervous they might fail to capture the essence of the piece. (I'm well aware the second concern is a bit much, but what I can say? I should have been tipped off that the team knew what it was doing by the Tales of the City-branded condoms and rolling papers at the merchandise table.)
As I've slowly become more aware of the possibility that any of the girls I know could be more with me, I've almost wished that my feelings had remained obscure. When the dance teacher comes close to me to show me where my position on the stage will be, I can smell her sweet perfume and am thinking about how attractive she is. I looks at the beautiful asian girls in my class and almost feel sad as I realize how nice they look. So then I started wondering: What's the different between simply admiring a woman's beauty - and feeling jealous - and being... turned on by what one sees? I think I intuitively know the answer to this, but whenever it comes to sexuality issues I second-guess myself.
modernist fragmentation, re-interpreted
I haven't been on for a while, sorry.
On Thursday, my mom found me blacked out in my bathroom. No one comes in my room so I had been there for a while. She couldn't wake me up because I had overdosed on Lituims, and painkillers, not to mention I had been using weed. She took me to the hospital and I had to get my stomach pumped. You don't want that expierence, trust me.
My brother, Jack, he's a year older than me (18) and him and his girlfriend got busted for selling and possesion of coke, and some weed and stuff. They go to court soon.
my poem ~feb. 23, 2003
I can't feel; I can't breathe
My throat shuts off
The pain is numbed by the fact I want to die
My lungs burn as the water comes in
The slits on my wrists bleed
As the water turns a dark red
My eyes are open and stare at nothing
I wait for him, the angel of death
To take me to hell, at least it's better then this.
My letter to Stacy, former friend. She called me a slut on Friday for some stupid shit. I sent it in the mail yesterday.
9 slashs... on my arms...
Yet, I should not have let
your hands hold me close
or your words steal my heart