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ptb2020

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Have we mentioned Almost Love here, a New York set movie of immense charm, with the for me fascinating actor Augustus Prew playing half of the central gay couple. I really enjoyed spending a couple of hours with this interesting group of characters and their ups and downs. Well worth seeing.
 

Will Krupp

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I've been watching Julie and the Phantoms on Netflix recently. It's a Glee-type high school fantasy series filled with original music and featuring a sweet, innocent romance between two male ghosts. Cheyenne Jackson also appears in a few episodes.
Thanks, again, for the tip. I'm about half way through and WHAT a delight it's been so far!! :emoji_heart::emoji_heart::emoji_heart::emoji_heart:
 

Stephen_J_H

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I've been watching Julie and the Phantoms on Netflix recently. It's a Glee-type high school fantasy series filled with original music and featuring a sweet, innocent romance between two male ghosts. Cheyenne Jackson also appears in a few episodes.
Thanks, again, for the tip. I'm about half way through and WHAT a delight it's been so far!! :emoji_heart::emoji_heart::emoji_heart::emoji_heart:
Agreed. I would pin it a little closer to High School Musical, and the gay romance is so G-rated as to potentially fly under the radar of even the most conservative of parents. I binged it over the weekend and loved it. Looking forward to the second season and even more of Cheyenne Jackson as the most hissable of villains.
 

ptb2020

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Just watched new Boys In The Band. Of course it’s still a period piece and setting it in 1968 was essential as attitudes have changed so much since then the film wouldn’t work if updated. The cast is uniformly good. I’m still not sure if I liked the brief flashbacks during the climax as they do destroy the claustrophobic atmosphere of Michael’s apartment. Enjoyed it? Can’t say I totally did, but that’s the play. The first half is witty and funny, the second part angry and depressing as Michaels self loathing reaches fever pitch!
Be interested hearing what others think.
 

KeithDA

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Just watched it and didn’t really like any of the characters. Presume for the time it was written, being non-stereotypical and sympathetic would not have been PC - today, the whole piece comes across as sad and angry.
Surprised it got revived on the stage, as other than being ‘brave’ for its time, it seemed too dated now. The actors probably enjoyed themselves - and that maybe was the point...?
 

Mark-P

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Just watched it and didn’t really like any of the characters. Presume for the time it was written, being non-stereotypical and sympathetic would not have been PC - today, the whole piece comes across as sad and angry.
Surprised it got revived on the stage, as other than being ‘brave’ for its time, it seemed too dated now. The actors probably enjoyed themselves - and that maybe was the point...?
I don’t know, perhaps showing gay people happy, and well-adjusted in 1968, would be akin to a rosy depiction of slavery in the south just prior to the Civil War? :oops: While I haven’t seen the play, and won’t get to the new movie until this weekend, I‘ve always found the 1970 movie a fascinating study of the culture of its period and I’ve had great empathy for all the characters in it.
 

Stephen_J_H

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I don’t know, perhaps showing gay people happy, and well-adjusted in 1968, would be akin to a rosy depiction of slavery in the south just prior to the Civil War? :oops: While I haven’t seen the play, and won’t get to the new movie until this weekend, I‘ve always found the 1970 movie a fascinating study of the culture of its period and I’ve had great empathy for all the characters in it.
It's interesting; as the 70s progressed, we saw more portrayals of gays in media and then the 80s came along to slap a rusty lock on the closet.
 
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Mark-W

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I don’t know, perhaps showing gay people happy, and well-adjusted in 1968, would be akin to a rosy depiction of slavery in the south just prior to the Civil War? :oops: While I haven’t seen the play, and won’t get to the new movie until this weekend, I‘ve always found the 1970 movie a fascinating study of the culture of its period, and I’ve had great empathy for all the characters in it.
Just finished it. I loved it. It is hard for me to watch. I absorb so fully what I see, and there is a lot of self-hate and anger, but there is love, too. Anger at the world that they take out on each other, but they stay together because of that unstated word they don't use with each unless a game is involved and points are to be awarded.
 

Matt Hough

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I watched it tonight as well. It was very well done, in some ways more cinematic than the 1970 version and in other ways just as stagy with occasional dialogue sounding like rehearsed stage speeches instead of just plain talking. I can see why Robin de Jesus got the Tony nomination; it was a different interpretation of Emory than Cliff Gorman's: less effeminate, more loving and supportive. The guys seemed very comfortable in the skins of their characters and more willing to be hands on among themselves (with the actors all being out gay men, I'm sure that helped enormously with their comfort levels playing these characters). WHile I enjoyed "The Madison" just as much as in the original film (with the great"Heat Wave" as their dance music), I was very appreciative of Alpert's "This Guy's in Love With You" for the slow dance scene: very evocative. I also loved the afterward looks at the characters which we were denied the first time around. Alan is still quite the enigma.
 

cinemiracle

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I don’t know, perhaps showing gay people happy, and well-adjusted in 1968, would be akin to a rosy depiction of slavery in the south just prior to the Civil War? :oops: While I haven’t seen the play, and won’t get to the new movie until this weekend, I‘ve always found the 1970 movie a fascinating study of the culture of its period and I’ve had great empathy for all the characters in it.
I saw the play when it first opened and it had such a tremendous impact on audiences.It was ground - breaking for the time. Unfortunately the sequel many years later failed to have any impact, at least not on me. How many people even saw it or remember the sequel? The new version on Netfilx was in my opinion,not as good as the original film. The acting was superb but the full frontal nudity dream sequences added nothing. It did open up somewhat like the original film did but it was a basically still a staged play. Worth a look but it would have been better as a filmed stage play without the dream sequences.I imagine that it would have been better seen on the stage rather than film it again. The impact on an audience would have been better.Flawless casting however but it is dated to-day and the now famous line 'who do you have to fuck to get a beer around here' has a highlight back then the play first opened but it lost it's funny impact in the Netflix film.
 
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Mark-W

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I watched it tonight as well. It was very well done, in some ways more cinematic than the 1970 version and in other ways just as stagy with occasional dialogue sounding like rehearsed stage speeches instead of just plain talking. I can see why Robin de Jesus got the Tony nomination; it was a different interpretation of Emory than Cliff Gorman's: less effeminate, more loving and supportive. The guys seemed very comfortable in the skins of their characters and more willing to be hands on among themselves (with the actors all being out gay men, I'm sure that helped enormously with their comfort levels playing these characters). WHile I enjoyed "The Madison" just as much as in the original film (with the great"Heat Wave" as their dance music), I was very appreciative of Alpert's "This Guy's in Love With You" for the slow dance scene: very evocative. I also loved the afterward looks at the characters which we were denied the first time around. Alan is still quite the enigma.
I loved the afterward moments, too.
The kindness and warmth displayed was a welcome addition
and that final shot will linger.

It was not as hard for me to recover from this The Boys in the Band as the original, but I had a recover-from-being-wrecked movie ready to watch two hours later. Funny how a silly, ostensibly trivial movie can stick with you and become a film that you don't realize means something to you until you see a product in the grocery store that reminds you of it and makes you smile.

IMG_20200930_224357.jpg


I ate a few as Blue mentions they're his favorite.

My mom loves Love, Simon as much, if not more, than I do.

I don't want to take anything more away from The Boys in the Band on its day, but I want to give a recommendation for Cicada, which I was dreading watching and ended up loving. Easily in my top five LGBT films of 2020. I will post a more detailed review within the week.
 
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MatthewA

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I was very appreciative of Alpert's "This Guy's in Love With You" for the slow dance scene: very evocative. I also loved the afterward looks at the characters which we were denied the first time around. Alan is still quite the enigma.
And again going back to the original film for inspiration. There, William Friedkin used an instrumental version of another Burt Bacharach song: "The Look of Love." The original, of course, was by Dusty Springfield in the 1967 version of Casino Royale. That she was a lesbian makes the connection even stronger there.
 
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Will Krupp

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I don't understand why they decided to re-make it. The original movie stands up very well.
Not sure that its themes are quite as relevant today as they were when the original was released.
Ryan Murphy also produced the stage show and pretty much has carte blanche (not to mention plenty of 'fuck you' money) to provide programming for Netflix. Seeing as it's near and dear to his heart, I think he just wanted a chance to preserve the 2018 Broadway performances on film. As much as Murphy gets on my nerves, I have to admit that I'm glad he has the chance and I'm glad he's in love with Broadway. I'm looking forward to what he's going to do with THE PROM (another one I was lucky enough to see in its closing weekend) when it premiers December (though I think, in that case, the original cast has all been chucked for "Big" names.)

While I'm glad it's here and I'm glad we have it, I think still prefer Friedkin's original movie as the "teller" of their story. I've only seen this one once so that may change, but right now I don't believe it will. Maybe I'm just used to the original film, but it feels like this one has been slowed down and opened up perhaps a little more than necessary, as we have too many chances to get out of the claustrophobia of the apartment towards the end and the feeling of manic desperation and tension is lessened as a result.

I also found it strange that the jokes didn't seem to "land" all that well in the first part of the story. One of the great things about the show is that it's so much fun until it isn't. Without the early "highs" the "lows" don't seem as seismic.

I think we're willing to suspend our disbelief when watching a stage play far more than we are when watching a movie and I think there's a certain amount of "playing safe" going on here. As I mentioned, the highs aren't as high and the lows don't seem as low as they were in either the 1970 movie nor the 2018 Broadway revival. I'll watch it again because I DID enjoy what they did with it but I think, as a movie, that all of the marquee names may get in the way of the story AS a "story." I always KNOW I'm watching movie star Zachary Quinto playing Harold, while I believed Leonard Frey WAS Harold, for example. None of this bothered me while watching it onstage (I was too star struck!) but it's more noticeable due to the intimacy of film.

Which brings me to Parsons' Michael on film. Let me start by saying that I LOVE Jim Parsons and I love that he always did Broadway during his BIG BANG hiatuses. HIs stage Michael (and Kenneth Nelson's 1970 film Michael) was played with barely concealed bitterness and a building rage (once he starts drinking) that is always threatening to escape and shatter his veneer. As the evening progresses, we just want him to stop as we know he'll regret the things he says and does but we also know he can't help himself. For some reason, a lot of that seems as though it's been "filed down" (for lack of a better term) here and Michael's actions feel much more deliberate and "thought out." Watching this movie is the first time I've ever judged Michael as an irredeemably evil queen and I don't think that was the intent. Since Joe Mantello also directed the Broadway play and Parsons played it so well at the Booth I'm not sure why there's a subtle change here but it's definitely a different feel and it alters the character (at least for me.)

Anyway, I DID like it! :)

Really wonderful, by the way, is the short BOYS IN THE BAND: SOMETHING PERSONAL promo piece that accompanies it on Netflix. It's a 30 minute behind the scenes doc on the making of the movie and follows Mart Crowley around during filming. It was really touching!
 
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Matt Hough

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If I had to pick ONE performance from the original that I preferred to the one in the new version, for me it would be Kenneth Nelson's Michael. I do love Leonard Frey in everything I ever saw him do, but I think Quinto does at least as well (to the point of copying his cadences and beats). But Nelson for me was a more pitiable character once the realization of what he had done hits him. For me, Parson's performance was a little stiffer and a bit less effective.
 
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