Thursday, Apr 27, 2017
 
search SGN
SERVING SEATTLE AND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR 37 YEARS!

click to visit advertiser's website


Javascript DHTML Drop Down Menu Powered by dhtml-menu-builder.com

Last Weeks Edition
   
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
 
 
 

 

 

[Valid RSS]

click to go to advertisers website
Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, June 10, 2011 - Volume 39 Issue 23
The Gay films of SIFF 2011, part II
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
  next story
The Gay films of SIFF 2011, part II

by Herb Krohn - SGN Contributing Writer

The Seattle International Film Festival is well underway, and will continue through June 12. Here is SGN's continuing look at the festival's prominent LGBT-oriented films.

For more film reviews as well as a schedule of upcoming films of Gay interest, visit www.sgn.org.

Information and tickets can be found at www.siff.net as well as the SIFF Box Office on the 2nd floor of Pacific Place, and SIFF Cinema at Seattle Center on Mercer Street.

Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same
Rating: Good
Genre: Comedy Farce
USA (Alien language subtitled)

A nerdy Lesbian stationery store clerk who just doesn't quite fit in falls in love with a Lesbian alien who has been sent to Earth by her own world to have her heart broken, as their planet has learned that the feeling of love contributes to the depletion of their protective ozone layer. The aliens look, dress, and talk in a monotone just like the Coneheads of Saturday Night Live fame. Presented mostly in black-and-white to convey a retro theme, only the space and alien planet scenes are in color. It was a delightful and humorous romp that the audience really seemed to enjoy, although the plot and pacing did seem to slow down a bit in the middle. Fun, silly, and at times outrageous, hopefully this film will be released soon.

Four More Years
Rating: Excellent
Genre: Political Comedy
Sweden (Subtitled)

A married conservative political leader in parliament whose party is dropping in the polls has an affair with an up-and-coming openly Gay socialist party member. A night of drinking and talking with the object of his affections results in his waking up in the other man's bedroom and discovering he's Gay. His wife has known this for years (even before they married) and she just accepted it and never confronted him. So now he struggles with what to do and has to make a decision whether to follow his heart or his obligation to his political career and constituents. This is an expertly produced romantic comedy which uses awkward social situations as the primary source of laughs. It is refreshing to see a film that raises the bar of Gay comedy without resorting to the lowest common denominators or bathroom humor to engage the audience. Not to be missed and already released in Sweden, let's hope it gets an American release.

Gun Hill Road
Rating: Poor
Genre: Trans Coming-of-Age
USA

When a career criminal gets out of prison after three years, he returns home to Brooklyn and finds that the pride of his life, his son, is Trans and is beginning to behave, dress, and act like a woman. With lots of violence, use of every old tired cliché, as well as horribly negative ethnic and racial stereotypes and shallow, unsympathetic characters, this film is yet another prime example of the frequent shallowness that still often exists in LGBT cinema in America. However, one redeeming part of this film is the outstanding debut performance of Harmony Santana as the teenaged son Michael (aka Vanessa) who is struggling to come to grips with the emotions of his angry father while at the same time deal with his own gender identity. Santana's performance is destined to become historically significant in American Gay cinema and will no doubt be examined in the future as a noteworthy characterization. The production values and plot are consistent; it's just the exploitation of negative stereotypes that brings this film down.

Black Bread
Rating: Excellent
Genre: Coming-of-Age/Historical Drama
Spain (Subtitled)
Friday, June 3, 9:30 p.m., Admiral Theatre

The family of a Catalonian Red Rebel suffers under Franco's regime in 1944 as 10-year-old Andreu learns the truth of the contradictions of his father's values. Set in a small village, the plot takes the audience through some great twists and turns as it exposes the complexity of human behavior. The entire plot centers on a repressive Gay-themed subplot. Warning: This film has several extremely violent (including anti-Gay) scenes which are critical to the story. The cinematography and characterization of this turbulent period of Spanish history are portrayed with remarkable clarity, as well as the true-to-life performances and the emotional upheaval within the family. This is an example of Spanish cinema at its best.

Littlerock
Rating: Very Good
Genre: Comedy Drama/Coming of Age
USA (Partially Subtitled)

A young female Japanese student who speaks no English is on trip to the USA with her brother. She finds herself stuck alone for several days in the small agricultural California desert town of Littlerock (yes, there really is such a place) where she develops friendships with a group of local guys around her age, even though they barely understand each other. She is taken under the wing of Cory Lawler, a very talkative stoner and irresponsibly dreamy young man (expertly and familiarly portrayed by newcomer Cory Zacharia) who appears to have sexual identity issues. The film really underscores the power of language and resulting communication across such barriers as some of the characters are able to communicate clearly, while others are too self-absorbed to convey their thoughts and feelings adequately. This is an excellent character portrayal film where the performances seem so realistic and are played with both depth and shallowness. It is a shining example of New American Cinema.

Lesson Plan
Rating: Outstanding
Genre: Documentary
USA

In 1967 at a high school in Palo Alto, California, a history teacher named Ron Jones, in response to a question about why ordinary Germans supported Hitler, decided to try an experiment with his students. Jones formed a student organization called the 'Third Wave' on campus to show how easily humans can get caught up in fascism. What transpired in only about five days is a legendary and notorious incident which changed the lives of nearly everyone involved and has become the subject of much sociological and scientific examination. The events that occurred clearly demonstrated that what happened in Germany could, in fact, happen here or anywhere by exploitation of the human desire to be part of a group when manipulated by a leader with a strong or charismatic personality. Through interviews with the actual participants including the teacher, the students themselves, and others, this is a fascinating examination of the appeal of demagoguery which shows that the road to fascism and totalitarianism can be a slippery slope in the right circumstances. This is a must-see SIFF entry which is almost certain to see theatrical release. Technically, this is nearly a perfect documentary in terms of cinematography, use of historical materials, and participant identification in subtitles. Documentary films are seldom as expertly produced as this work of cinema.

Steam of Life
Rating: Excellent
Genre: Documentary/Masculinity
Finland/Sweden (Subtitled)
Tuesday, June 7, 6:30 p.m., Admiral Theatre

In these two Nordic countries, the sauna is a significant community institution for men. Through interviews with naked men of all ages, sizes, and backgrounds in and around sauna baths, the filmmakers explore masculine emotion as the profiled subjects talk openly about their lives, experiences, and emotions. While it is a simple film (and most of the men would not be considered eye candy) it is nonetheless a fascinating and amazing glimpse into the experience of being a man within Nordic culture. This is a film that clearly demonstrates the benefits that SIFF brings to our area.

Tell a friend:

Share on Facebook  Share on Facebook

Post to MySpace!Share on MySpace!

    Share on Delicious

Share on StumbleUpon!

Pride Idol's week 10 a disco inferno
------------------------------
k.d. lang: Loud and proud - Being butch, coming out, and being the first Gay country star (before Chely Wright)
------------------------------
U2 plays supersized show to massive audience
------------------------------
Ewan McGregor and director Mike Mills talk about Beginners - An older generation comes out, and the villain of American history
------------------------------
A Dyke About Town: Allen Toussaint an amazing songwriter, performer
------------------------------
Sense and Sensibility - a great adaptation
------------------------------
Parody Elektra a funny look at Greek tragedy
------------------------------
International press praises PNB's Giselle
------------------------------

------------------------------
AIDS at 30 - Special Forum From KQED Public Radio in San Francisco
------------------------------
Chip Pope to headline Laff Hole
------------------------------
The Gay films of SIFF 2011
------------------------------
The Gay films of SIFF 2011, part II
------------------------------
The Gay films of SIFF 2011, part III
------------------------------
'The best' - Beginners is profound
------------------------------
Q-Scopes by Jack Fertig
------------------------------

------------------------------
Augustana frontman a real rock-star daddy
------------------------------
Northwest News
------------------------------
Letters
------------------------------
Tenor Jonas Kaufmann spectacular in Tosca DVD
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
Seattle Gay Blog post your own information on
the Seattle Gay Blog
 

gay news feeds gay news readers gay rss gay
http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS? | Add to Google use Google to set up your RSS feed
SGN Calendar For Mobile Phones http://sgn.org/rssCalendarMobile.xml
SGN Calendar http://sgn.org/rssCalendar.xml
copyright Seattle Gay News - DigitalTeamWorks 2011

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News
Pacific Northwest News in Seattle News in Washington State News