1.0 -- THE GOOD AMERICAN,
Documentary about German expatriot Tom Weise, who co-founded
RENTBOY.COM, host tothe annual HUSTLABALL. Graphic
and explicit. Editing and script tended to jump around.
2.3 -- CHEF'S SPECIAL,
Nacho G. Vellila
Comedy about relationships: a gay chef with two children
who come back into his life when their mother dies; a lovelorn
and gorgeous maitre d. seeking the right man, and a former
soccer player who is afraid to admit he is gay. Unconventional
couplings make for hilarious moments but film falls short
of being noteworthy.
2.5 -- FIG TREES,
Experimental film that mixes documentary and an avant garde
opera. Centers on Aids activists Tim McCaskell (Aids Action
Now) and Zachie Achmat (Treatment Action Campaign). Complex
and multi layered, allegorical allusions and excessive details
make this hard to follow.
2.5 -- END OF LOVE,
Drama centering on 22-year old Ming from three periods in
his life: leading up to rehab, rehab and release from rehab.
Well constructed plot, average performances.
2.7 -- SOUNDLESS WIND CHIME,
Hung Wing Kit
Lyrical drama of a relationship between a Chinese immigrant
in Hong Kong and a German Swiss. Use of time lapse sequences
distracted from narrative flow.
3.6 -- SHANK,
Gritty, violent and erotic thriller about a Bristol U.K.
street gang youth coming to terms with his homosexuality
and the feared reaction of the other gang members. Though
we clearly see the inexperience of cast and crew (average
age is 19 and film contains many continuity errors), the
overall result is very impressive and Simon Pearce, at 22,
shows up as a very promising director.
3.0 -- FRUITFLY,
Musical in the same vein as RENT but with an element of queerness.
About a Filipino performance artist searching for info about
her biological mother. Catchy, versatile melodies and meaningful
-- OY VEH! MY SON IS
Jewish comedy touching on the maternal instinct to see her
son happily married. Yet son is involved with someone -- a
Catholic-Italian-American man. The reaction of parents to
discover is e hilariously side-splitting. Parents are played
by Saul Rubinek and Lane Kazan, with top-notch comedic performance
from rest of cast.
-- BEYOND GAY: THE
POLITICS OF PRIDE,
Canadian documentary meditating on the issues of LGBT human
rights, homophobia and gay pride here and abroad. Shocking
scenes of extreme homophobic reactions versus celebratory
gay pride parades in Canada, Brazil and U.S.A. Shows that
despite advances since the 70s, there is still a long way
-- EATING OUT: ALL YOU CAN
Sex farce somewhat on a Cyrano de Bergerac concept -- with
a gay theme. At times a bit lacking in taste but does offer
humorous moments and even occasional gems of wisdom.
-- RAGING SUN, RAGING SKY,
Inspired to an extent by the Greek myth of "Orpheus and Eurydice"
and the Mayan myth of "Popul Vuh." A surrealistic search
for true love that comes across as three hour romp from
one encounter to the next. Only at the end do we see the
allusions to the mythologies. Little character development
and poorly constructed.
Sensitive drama filmed in the gay resort town of Guerneville,
CA exploring two men, each at the crossroads. Everett and
Miles have been together for eight years and they have an
autistic son named Billy. Their relationship has grown stale.
Miles and Billy go to Seattle to visit Grandma. Writer Chase
arrives in town. An immediate chemistry develops between
Chase and Everett. New love in old growth. Delicately and
Teen comedy exploring confusion, longing, thrills and lust.
The machinations and intimacies of three friends -- Alexa,
Ben and Johnny. Funny and poignant, tangled yet poetic.
First Basque language gay film. Ander is a farmer in his
forties and still single living with his mother and soon to
be married younger sister. On occasion with his pal(s), he
visits local single mother prostitute. One day, while tending
the herd, Ander has a serious accident that incapacitates
him. To help out they hire a young Peruvian immigrant. A disquieting
and somewhat homophobic attraction develops. Slow paced, sensitively
handled. Set in the pastoral and rugged beauty of Basque countryside.
-- I CAN'T THINK
Delightful comedy about the collision between traditional
sexual values versus lesbian/homosexual ssexuality. Palestinian-Christian
Tala meets Muslim Leyla and they fall madly in love. This
forces each of them to take the bold step to face their respectively
traditional families. Excellent performances. Hilarious moments.
-- GIVE ME YOUR HAND,
Atmospheric surreal drama following twin brothers as they
hitchhike their way to Spain. Loose editing and script failed
-- DREAM BOY,
Shy and nervous new boy, Nathan, and Roy, rough and ready
neighbour and local school bus driver develop a strong attraction
for each other. Found the film to have neither foundation
nor a sense of direction; too many twists and turns from
Americana to illicit the abusive etc. Stilted performances.
-- AND THEN CAME
Siler, Ellen Seidler
San Franciscan lesbian take on the far superior German film
"Run Lola Run." Well placed inclusion of animated sequences.
Humour added a bit of salt and pepper.
-- THE BIG GAY
Andreas, Fred M. Caruso
Eddie and Paul are appearing in their first off-broadway
production -- a gay take on the biblical Genesis story. Eddie
is worried over his parents' reaction as he has not yet come
out of the closet. Paul is seeking out who he really is. Wonderful
and engaging song and dance numbers while addressing very
important issues in a delightful and entertaining way
2.4 -- HOLLYWOOD, JE T'AIME,
Delightful bittersweet comedy about an Adrian Brody lookalike
(and he really does resemble) -- still haunted by recent breakup
with former lover -- who leaves Paris for Los Angeles in pursuit
of the "Hollywood dream." Paris scenes are in B&W in contrast
to LA which are in colour. Believable characters somewhat
undermined by commplace scenario.
Slow burning psychological drama involving a desperate and
frustrated young woman recovering from an attempted suicide
caused by an overbearing father who is a surgeon preparing
a weird skin graft to repair her severely damaged face. He
hires a nurse with a sordid past to care for her. A forbidden
and passionate love affair developes between her and the nurse.
Despite abrupt ending, erotic scenes and music poetically
ALL FILMS, CONSULT SYVAIN RICHARD'S RATING PAGE HERE.