The LGBT history and the fight for equality is sadly filled with hatred, animosity and prejudice from the outside world, as well as a whole host of seemingly insurmountable obstacles – but how many of us know of the bad blood and bitterness that went on inside the gay rights movement between actual queer folks and transgender people? The Death And Life Of Marsha P. Johnson offers a unique perspective on liberation for gender nonconforming individuals and is an imperative documentary for anyone looking to fully understand the origins and evolution of the LGBT movement.
The perfectly cast Seana Kerslake takes an occasionally unappealing character and makes us want to give her the same recurrent chances as the other characters in the film. And there are some delightfully unexpected moments – largely stemming from Mary’s penchant for jeopardizing or even ruining whatever good things come her way.
Invariably at every film festival there’s one or two films that don’t get as much festival buzz around them and somehow go under the radar. This is definitely the case for Four Days in France of this year’s Outfest edition. Combining Rimbaud poems, art, anonymous sex, classical music and the notorious dating app Grindr, Jérôme Reybaud’s debut is undoubtedly a daring, but impressive addition to gay cinema.
Jonny Mars plays Alex, a drifter who wades back in to his hometown with the aim of confronting the man who abused him sexually as a child. Upon tracking down his former abuser, finding that he is frail and crippled with physical and mental illness, his original vengeance quest is paused and he continues to lead an existence outside of mainstream society. He is, after all, a man of few words, devoting his free time to either making money pimping himself or other people out- and it should be noted, although this issue is handled with surprising restraint, that the sexual partners he tends to visit are all significantly older men, which could be interpreted as a reason for his relationship with his abuser to become more complicated.
A naked young man with a tinted face stands handcuffed to a lamp post in some alley in Berlin. He does not plead for help, nor does he cry in despair; he is simply uncomfortable with the bizarre situation he finds himself in. A mature man in a suit walks by and finds this fragile young man, who seems to have gone through some hazing ritual or bullying, and helps him out. They both go to the older man’s apartment, where they end up spending the night together.
Set backstage on the opening night of a new Broadway musical about one hit wonders, Opening Night stars Topher Grace as Nick, the miserable production manager of the show, just about managing to hide his disdain for the production and many of the people involved with it. As the show nears stage time, he struggles with the ego of his leading man, N*Sync’s JC Chasez who he finds out has also slept with his former girlfriend – who just happens to be the understudy to the leading actress.
It’s not every day that you see a gay-themed horror film, particularly not one which is expressly ravishing and has stunning cinematography. Although there is plenty of homosexual subtext in some of the greatest horror classics, and even in the more recently produced sequels, having a slow-burning thriller which keeps you on the edge of your seat and is also centered on gay men is a rather new and lavishly entertaining addition on the big screen.
Most of the members of Check It are estranged from their families or have otherwise disadvantageous home lives. A lot of them are homeless and many of them turn to prostitution in order to pay rent, eat or just survive. But what else are they supposed to do? When they get kicked out of their homes as young teenagers simply for being different and/or kicked out of school at an even younger age because of perceived behavioral problems, what other recourse do these undereducated black LGBT teenagers have?
Do You Take This Man, the narrative feature debut from writer/director Joshua Tunick, has an empathetic warmth that continues to grow as the film progresses – the story isn’t particularly innovative for the genre, but the characters are believable and their respective situations universally relatable, which helps make this story feel as utterly refreshing as it is heartwarming.