Just got done with Bear City and I'm more than happy to acknowledge I enjoyed the movie, but also know it's just about average (technically speaking).
So what I liked primarily dealt with an underrepresented community in film being showcased with no embarassment whatsoever. Typically, we're going to find movies (and gay movies in particular) where the main characters are "VGL" people (very good looking) but they feel they have a terrible lot in life because they're "ugly." This one can't get laid, that one can't find a steady boyfriend, woe is me. But here, these characters are beautiful in their own right and the movie goes out of its way to show there are people are are attracted to all sizes, shapes, colors and personalities. That in itself is a positive message.
What I didn't like was how quickly a lot of the characters changed over the course of the film. For instance, one of the major plots is a young man (Tyler) learning to accept he is attracted to bears. I felt like I missed some of his self-acceptance somewhere along the line. Sure, he found people he could be himself with, but is that all that has to happen for that switch to be flipped inside a person? Find people who think the same as you and *poof* you're suddenly okay with it, too?
There's so many competing plots that one character-Carlito-gets lost in everything going on. It's sad, when you think about it, since his boyfriend is considering lap band surgery because of his size. That could be a movie all by itself.
Still, I do recommend Bear City. It reminded me a lot of Broken Hearts Club--and I adore that movie, so it's a good comparison in my mind.
I just wanted to take a moment and thank you for posting your review of Bear City.
I watched it a summer or two ago, and enjoyed it. As you stated, it was refreshing to not have a film with VGL people complaining about being ugly or single and I find your comments ring true to the film for me. The additional comment I have is that the lead is coming out as loving bears and then promptly falls for a.... "silver fox," which felt like an issue of miscasting to me. The bonus content even confirmed when the filmmakers said they were looking for a bear, but the ultimately wanted the actor they hired in spite of the fact he was not a bear.
Does this matter? In the end, I don't think so because the film is about celebrating loving all shapes, sizes, and ages. Still it nagged on me a bit while watching the film.
In trying to find an image today, I did see that the film has a sequel, Bear City 2, which includes Kathy Najimy in the cast!
I have not seen it, but here is what the site says about the sequel:
Kathy Najimy plays den mother to the returning cast of bears, boys and cubs, for a Bear Week bachelor party in Provincetown! Take a trip down the aisle with Roger and Tyler to one of the most magical beach towns on earth in this romantic comedy for all.
Kevin Smith, Lt. Dan Choi, Frank DeCaro, Mike Ruiz and Varla Jean Merman, lend their support to our lovable gang as they navigate through a foam party, ex‐boyfriends and 6,000 sexy men.
Meanwhile, Richard Riehle (Bridesmaids) as father of the groom, learns a whole new meaning to the word "Daddy!"
BearCity 2: The Proposal, is a romp full of fur, fun and family as the bears realize that marriage is much more than just the freedom to say "I do."
Here is a link to the trailer for the sequel: http://main.bearcity2.com/trailer.php
Both are available on Blu-ray, either separately or in a both films Blu ray set.
I am including images, as it mentions bonus materials (I am a sucker for commentary tracks.) for each film.
Now I need to at least rent the sequel.
The film(s) can be ordered at Amazon, and also at the film's site.