Gay-Friendly Blu-rays

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Mark Walker, Sep 3, 2012.

  1. Moe Dickstein

    Moe Dickstein Filmmaker

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    she was Lee's mom
     
  2. Mark-P

    Mark-P Producer

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    Of course I realized that after the fact, my point being that she was completely unrecognizable!
     
  3. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    I certainly didn't recognize her as I watched. She was disguised wonderfully, and she's always been talented with doing voices that sound nothing like her own.

    I enjoyed it, but I couldn't stop thinking that Victor Garber did a better Liberace in that TV movie all those years ago. I kept "hearing" Michael Douglas instead of Liberace. Having grown up with him on TV and in concerts for decades, that voice is unmistakable, and Douglas was not quite spot-on (and he seemed a little short for the part, too, but that simply might have been because of Damon's size). Of course, he may not have been going for an exact impersonation. I haven't read interviews to see if he was only trying for an essence rather than a carbon copy impersonation.

    I thought Matt Damon was the walk-away star of the production.
     
  4. Moe Dickstein

    Moe Dickstein Filmmaker

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    I think Douglas is one of those actors who's never really done a "voice" for a role before and this is the most unlike himself he's ever tried for. For me not being wildly familiar with Lee's voice I thought it was a really good job of going into his style of speech and timbre without doing a caricature or impression. I just thought they were both outstanding and the film itself was pretty amazing.I just wish SS would break his no commentary rule for this one, or maybe let Douglas and Damon do one. I'm getting this day one on Blu, as I actually watched the whole thing on my iPad on HBO Go, and a measure of how good the film is I was just sucked in from frame one and could have watched it on my phone and loved it
     
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  5. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    I think they tried very hard (and succeeded) in staying away from caricature, which must have been incredibly hard to do with someone who was, like Marilyn Monroe, deliberately making a caricature in their guise as an entertainer.

     
  6. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    I love that Debbie Reynolds knew Liberace and his mother. It adds to the layers cool factor of the program.

    I can find nothing on a Blu-ray release of Behind the Candelabra.

    I thought I would mention Cloud Atlas here as another gay-friendly film.

    Also, I finally started watching Mad Men which includes at least two LGBT characters before the end of season one. (I am just start season 2.) I realize this makes me behind most of North America on watching this show, but there you go. Had someone told me it had Bryan Batt as a mainstay character, I would have started watching it much sooner.

    Other quick notes, I watched the film August on DVD and I thought it was well-made, with a gorgeous cast, a story line that was engaging, and characters that (mostly) felt real.
    [​IMG]

    August is steamy the way Sex, Lies, & Videotape is steamy, with both introducing characters from the past to stir things up in the present, though August is much more about that ex you never got over coming back into your life after you just got to a point where you feel like you had started to move on..

    [​IMG]

    The chemistry between the leads is all quite convincing and it is very easy to understand why someone would go fatal on Troy, as played by Murray Bartlett, as he is one of those characters that uses sexual heat and confidence combined with the little boy lost syndrome in a manner that brings out the self-serving rescuer in more than a few folks.

    I rented it from Netflix and I am not quite sure I need to own it, though I admit I could watch Murray Bartlett doing anything for hours and find it worth the purchase price.

    The DVD includes a brief making of documentary. A commentary track would've been nice and pushed this to a "must own" title for me.

    I will say I am ready for some less serious, happier, LGBT films.

    Cheers,

    Mark
     
  7. Moe Dickstein

    Moe Dickstein Filmmaker

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    Mark, sounds like you need a screening of "Trick".I'm sure BTC will be on Blu at some point.
     
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  8. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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  9. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    It's a pure coincidence I received Word is Out: Stories of Some of Our Lives from Netflix the same weekend Behind the Candelabra aired. This is a doc from 1977 which talks to gay men and lesbians about their experiences growing up gay, coming out, their then current lives and what they hope for the future.

    Here's the thing: this is the kind of movie we are sorely lacking today. Not even a movie, but the conversations between the "elders" in the community and the younger set. The amount we can learn as individuals and as a community from the people who were "out" before Stonewall, before the 1950s, before there was any kind of inkling we could be out and all the positives we have today...it's all more relevant now than ever.

    I can't pin down the most interesting story or person shown. Is it the woman who recounts stories of the military? Or the couple who would end up with a number of grandchildren and two great-grandchildren? The man who says he chooses not to have an emotional connection with the men he sleeps with? Or the Asian man who draws parallels between called one racially derogatory term and one based on sexual orientation? It's all of them, honestly. All 26 stories, all 26 people.

    Sure, this is a dated movie...but it's all still relevant today. Highly, highly recommended.
     
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  10. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    Word Is Out was such a groundbreaker in its day. I videotaped it when PBS aired it and must have watched it a hundred times over the next ten or fifteen years.
     
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  11. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    One thing I did forget to mention: the DVD has a 24 minute "where are they now" extra feature. Check it out. It's undeniably sad in parts-a number of the people we got to know over the doc were not around anymore for one reason or another-and it is jarring to see how these people aged. But they were the ones who lived through most of the seminal moments in gay history up to filming and it's nice to get some closure on all their stories.
    I think people like me-kids of the late 70s/early 80s-would see it as ground breaking to this day, The people change and the stories take on a different flavor, but there is a piece of every single story everyone can relate to. I don't know if I could watch again anytime in the near future; I've been kinda bummed out all afternoon. More of a function of my current mental state than anything else, I think, though. :wacko:
     
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  12. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    I had never heard of this. I just added it to my Netflix queue!

    Thanks fellas!
     
  13. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    I have two items to post today.

    For those of you who, like me, are Doctor Who fans, there was a show that came on after the Doctor on BBC America called Orphan Black that just finished its first season. Without giving much away, imagine being a petty crook, and while visiting your home town after years of being away, you spot someone who looks exactly like you...and then that person, incredibly well-dressed, jumps in front of train. You never knew you had a twin, if that was your twin, but there is too much money to not just take her things and steal her identity...why not?

    That is just the first five minutes.

    [​IMG]
    The Blu-ray will be released in July. Without spoiling anything, this show is gay-friendly.
    In addition to being the freshest show on television and having at least two characters that are openly gay, there is also the rather deliberate casting of a talented actor & hunk named Dylan Bruce who early on provides plenty of eye candy while the program hooks you.




    Item two. How many of you ever saw Yossi & Jagger ?
    It came out many years ago and dealt with two Israeli soldiers in love.

    Well, there is now a sequel titled Yossi

    [​IMG]

    Yossi is a sequel and picks up about ten years after the events in Yossi & Jagger.

    I enjoyed it quite a bit, but the whole "will they or won't they?" becomes a bit strained for me. Just when I had ran out of patience, it delivers.
    It is relatively short film at 84 minutes. And while it plays a bit like a fantasy many an aging man would dream up (gay or straight),
    there is also a heart here.

    My only hope is that this becomes a trilogy because I want more story than where the film left the characters.
     
  14. Will Krupp

    Will Krupp Screenwriter

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    I had no idea she was going to be in it and wouldn't have recognized her at all if she hadn't spoken. As soon as I heard the voice I said "HOLY SHIT" that's Debbie REYNOLDS! I thought she was great. "I'll take a check!"
     
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  15. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    I just think none of us are used to seeing Reynolds under so much make up and playing someone so far removed from the high energy spunky gal we've seen her do so many times.
    ...

    Going back to idea of films that are dealing with LGBT subtext and comments in the Bell, Book, & Candle thread, and some forum members comments regarding my ideas about the X-Men story lines in the films being about LGBT issues, the screen writer of the last film has this to say:

    “The gay rights/post-Holocaust Jewish identity/civil-rights allegory stuff was all put in there on purpose,” First Class screenwriter Zack Stentz posted online. “Joss Whedon designed the whole ‘Cure’ storyline in the comic books specifically as a gay allegory, and Bryan Singer wove his own feelings of outsiderdom as a gay man into the movie series.”

    The source of this can be found here
    http://www.themarysue.com/x-men-first-class-gay-subtext/

    Cheers!


     
  16. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    Um, I'm sorry...how can you not see almost every superhero as an LBGT allegory? They have to hide who they are, remain outsiders in the world, risk being ostracized when they do "come out" and have to have an entire conversation with the people closest to them when the decide to live as who they are.

    What other reading is there about that? I mean, X2 was very up front about that and X3 had the entire storyline of making a choice of changing who you are. Clark Kent and Peter Parker want to to keep their other identities secret to protect the people they love. The list can go on and on, but I think we all know that.
     
  17. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    I get what you're saying Jason, but one could argue that it was not intentional until the X-Men.

    Most superhero stories and Superman/Clark Kent had resigned himself to being happy that Lois Lane had forgotten who he was. He was gone to live alone and asexual. Not a good message for LGBT folks...Richard Donner would not have put anything deliberately as gay allegory nor with the message "stay in the closet."

    The message in the X-Man is decidedly "Mutant and Proud" to quote Mystique. And "Mutant Pride" and mutants being genetic (not aliens or fellas from rich families with tragic backgrounds.).

    And, in X2, when asked why she does not hide (stay in the closet) she says they should not have to hide which is why she walks around blue when she could blend in.

    Most other superheros are "in the closet" citing a need to protect those they love. Um. Ugh.
    And Not a good message for LGBT kids...and certainly not a gay allegory. "Stay in the closet to protect the family." How 1950s.

    With, as you noted, ideas about cures and comments about mutant teachers and some mutants not wanting to be mutants and struggling to accept themselves for who they are, there is very little of that in most other superhero movies where the message is more like "With great power come great responsibility."

    Even in fellow Marvel's "The Avengers," I am not seeing any gay content, other that Loki should come out of the closet. ;)
    Thor, Iron Man, Captain America,...all seem absent of gay allegory. Hulk is basically Beast in green so that one is an "okay, yeah" gimme.

    Most other superheros, as seen in films on Blu-ray, are perfectly happy to lead duplicitous lives. Bruce Wayne is the real person, not Batman...the opposite of gay folks who are not so duplicitous so much as just being in the closet. The characters in X-men have their code names, but it is not like Clark Kent/Superman.

    The X-men, for the most part, on film, do not put on masks to hide their identities the way others do, even if it is pair of thick rimmed glasses.

     
  18. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    Oh, I'm not saying it was intentional back when Superman was created. In fact, if I remember correctly, Superman was created because Shuster and Siegel were Jewish "outsiders" and wanted to create a character that would stand up for and represent everyone. The by-product of Superman being 75 years old now is that we can overlay our own "reading" on the characters, give them different interpretations.

    X-Men, absolutely. They're "new" enough where being gay was entering mainstream America. And obviously, as time has gone on, writers have ran with that particular metaphor.

    I still think anyone in The Avengers could be a gay allegory. All of the characters are outsiders in certain ways, used to doing their own thing. When they find a group of like minded souls-all dealing with the issues-they become powerful. I'm seeing visions of Stonewall here or equality or any other issue. As individuals fighting for what we want, it doesn't work. But rally a group together...BAM! You're a force to be reckoned with.

    One of the many reasons I hate X3 is the whole cure and there were mutants who wanted to be "normal." What is "normal," after all? There's no "normal" number of kids to have, no "normal" job, no "normal" house, etc. I had a real problem with Rogue, who has been with the series from the beginning, deciding she wanted to change herself instead of accepting who she was. Really, the X-Men movies can be seen as Rogue's story as much as Wolverine's. I actually like it better that way since, to me, Wolverine and Jackman are insufferable.
     
  19. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    Jason_V,
    I just wanted to follow up and say "Thanks!" for posting about
    Word is Out: Stories of Some of Our Lives
    on DVD and the note to not miss the "Where are they now?" bonus content.

    I guess I did not find it that jarring to see them all these years later and I was, frankly, surprised more of the men were around than I thought would be. It was great to learn how this film was put together, including the businessman who noted that he was recruited because they needed some diversity, as they were concerned that they had too many "dykes in the woods." LOL!

    It was also great to see how some of the folks talked about how they had evolved in their positions, from "Let us be." to "Let us in."

    I still don't know how this film fell under my radar all of these years.

    Thanks again!
    ...

    Completely unrelated, folks may have heard that Criterion and its affiliated companies have lost the rights to the Merchant-Ivory films in their catalog.

    If you do not yet have "Maurice," on DVD, a landmark LGBT film for me and many others, now is the time to find a copy.
    [​IMG]
    The DVD is quite nice with a 2nd disc of bonus content.
    [​IMG]

    Cheers!






     
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  20. Mark Walker

    Mark Walker Cinematographer
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    Moe,

    You were right!
    [​IMG]
    Coming September 17th, currently listed for $19.99 at Amazon and includes a DVD and digital copy.
    It can be found here.

    ....
    Unrelated, but it is LGBT media...
    While we're in a period of breaking down barriers, with Jason Collins, Frank Ocean and all the "I Dos" starting to happen, I felt it appropriate to mention a new male county singer who just may end up being the first open-from-the-start, possible country music star.
    http://www.buzzfeed.com/mattbellassai/meet-steve-grand-who-might-be-the-first-ever-gay-male-countr
    [​IMG]
    He has no record label and released his first song "All-American Boy" and the accompanying heart-throbbing/heart-breaking music video for it right before the 4th of July.

    [​IMG]
    The song can be bought as a download where you pick your own amount to pay here.

    [​IMG]

    There is no denying the he is gorgeous (Just trying to find images from the video to post here unearthed images of him modeling for DNA magazine.), but I will also say the song is fantastic and the video is very touching (I am reading lots of "Been there; Done That" comments on his Facebook page.).

    I have never bought a song based solely on finding the singer handsome or because he was gay, and that continues to be true. (I never bought any songs from Colton Ford, and there is this singer named Jonsey who is also a good-looking, now out, country singer with songs on iTunes, but none of them are doing anything for me.)

    RYOT.ORG had this to say about Steve Grand:
    This a powerful statement for both the LGBTQ and country music community. In the wake of Frank Ocean’s impact on the R&B community and the recent SCOTUS ruling, equal rights has seen incredible leaps and bounds in both music and legislation this year alone. Steve Grand’s brave venture is yet another important bound forward.
    I want more great songs from him and I do want him to be a success. His Facebook site has gone from under 600 likes when I first saw it on July 3rd to over 18,000 now.

    Here's hoping. :)


     
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