Tuesday, Apr 07, 2020
 
search SGN
SERVING SEATTLE AND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR 40 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
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website




 

 
 

 

 

[Valid RSS]

click to go to advertisers website
to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, November 7 2014 - Volume 42 Issue 45
Movie Reviews
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
  next story
Take a look
by Gary M. Kramer - SGN Contributing Writer

THE WAY HE LOOKS
SUNDANCE CINEMAS
(A 21+ ONLY VENUE)
Now playing


The sweet and sunny Brazilian romance, The Way He Looks, is writer/director Daniel Ribeiro's feature length version of his excellent 2010 short Eu Não Quero Voltar Sozinho (I Don't Want to Go Back Alone). This expanded version, easily the feel good film of the year, is one of those rare, happy cases where the feature improves upon the short.

Ribeiro employs the same actors, which benefits The Way He Looks because the three central performers have an established chemistry that is infectious. There is a palpable naturalism in how they interact; viewers believe right away that the lead characters have been friends forever.

Leonardo (Ghilherme Lobo) is a blind teenager whose bestie, Giovana (Tess Amorim) assists him in school and walks him home. When Gabriel (Fabio Audi) joins their class, he befriends Leo and Gi as she's called. When a class assignment forces Gabriel and Leo to work together, the guys quickly form an intimate bond, which causes Gi to become jealous. In episodes created for the feature, the guys go to the movies together (Gabriel describes the action to Leo); they sneak out late at night to watch an eclipse; and Gabriel teaches the classical music-loving Leo about modern music.

Ribeiro infuses these moments - Leo hugging Gabriel on the bicycle they share, or Gabriel guiding Leo to dance to music - with a tender sexual tension to show how these two teenagers fall in love. The short only had the teens touching hands, or Leo sniffing Gabriel's clothes to create a shorthand for their affection. These expanded episodes serve to magnify the boys' burgeoning desires.

The film's visual cues are also strong. A scene of Leo practicing kissing in the shower expresses the desires he feels but does not dare to express. And this is what makes The Way He Looks so magical; the guys never discuss their emotions, but they are all tactile. When Gabriel plants a kiss on Leo, or the two friends shower together during an overnight class trip - and Gabriel becomes aroused at the sight of Leo naked - the unspoken attraction hangs in the air.

Ribeiro's warm approach to telling Leo's story prompts viewers to want the boys to couple up. Of course, there are subplots that try to keep the guys apart, but they never feel forced. Giovana's jealousy is poignant, and when Leo's classmates mock him - he is tricked at a party during a game of spin the bottle - it is typical of any film in which the Gay kid is 'different.'

Shrewdly, Leo's blindness is never treated as a gimmick in The Way He Looks. His disability is a joke for some of his classmates, but mostly it is an issue for Leo's overprotective mother, who is reluctant to let him attend an overnight class trip, or study abroad. That Gabriel treats Leo the way he would anyone, is refreshing and what makes their relationship even more satisfying.

Ribeiro's highly enjoyable film is so charming, one can forgive its predictability. The Way He Looks is sure to leave a smile in viewers' hearts.

© 2014 Gary M. Kramer,/i>


2014 Fall Preview - Part II (November & December)
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

The Holiday Movie Season begins with a literal bang this weekend, Christopher Nolan's ambitious science fiction spectacular Interstellar and Disney's superhero, anime-inspired computer animated Marvel-mashup Big Hero 6 each opening to huge expectations and even greater box office aspirations. But they're just the tip of the iceberg as far as November and December go, high-minded dramatic fare fantasizing of Oscar glory crossing paths with big budget extravaganzas looking to sell hundreds of millions of dollars in tickets hitting theaters each and every week.

While The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part I (Nov. 21) is sure to be the dominant cinematic force for the remainder of 2014, smaller, more intimate fare like the Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything (Nov. 14) and the Alan Turing WWII-era melodrama The Imitation Game (Nov. 28) fearlessly heading into the fray right up against Katniss Everdeen herself. Steve Carell and Channing Tatum chase Academy Awards with what some feel are career-defining performances in Bennett Miller's Foxcatcher (Nov. 28), battling sequels and spinoffs like Horrible Bosses 2 and The Penguins of Madagascar (both Nov. 26) as all three look to fill seats to the point they're overflowing.

December is even more of a crowded crapshoot. The family dollar finds itself under assault by high profile musicals Annie (Dec. 19) and Into the Woods (Dec. 23), while mega-budget sequels Night at the Museum: Secrets of the Tomb (Dec. 19) and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (Dec. 17) hope to live up to the gargantuan takes of their hugely successful predecessors. Ridley Scott goes epic with the Ten Commandments spectacle Exodus: Gods and Kings (Dec. 12), Angelina Jolie takes up director's reins for the second time with the WWII survival story Unbroken and Clint Eastwood brings to life the story of the most lethal soldier in history of the U.S. military with American Sniper (both Dec. 23).

And that's just the tip of the iceberg, the holiday multiplex chaos sure to be massive as more than 100 pictures crowd into theaters looking to turn heads and send audiences out the door with a smile. The following is a small sampling of the films scheduled to hit Seattle between now and the end of the year. As always, release dates are subject to change, so keep that in mind as you head out to your favorite movie house.

Nov. 7
Big Hero 6, Diplomacy, Interstellar, The Way He Looks

Nov. 14
The Better Angels, Beyond the Lights, Camp X-Ray, Dumb and Dumber To, Force Majeure, Rosewater, The Theory of Everything

Nov. 21
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part I, Low Down

Nov. 26
Horrible Bosses 2, The Penguins of Madagascar

Nov. 28
Antarctica: A Year on Ice, Comin' at Ya! 3D, The Imitation Game, Pelican Dreams, Remote Area Medical

Dec. 5
The Babadook, Pioneer, Point and Shoot, The Pyramid

Dec. 12
Exodus: Gods and Kings, Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles, Top Five, Wild, Zero Motivation

Dec. 17
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Dec. 19
Annie, The Gambler, Mr. Turner, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb

Dec. 25
American Sniper, Big Eyes, The Interview, Into the Woods, Selma, Two Days One Night, Unbroken


Electrifying Whiplash paradiddles the heart
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

WHIPLASH
Now playing


Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller) dreams of greatness. A 19-year-old freshman at a prestigious New York music academy he's already caught the interest of Terrence Fletcher (J. K. Simmons), the school's world-renowned jazz conductor known equally for discovering talent as he is for his vicious methods of bringing it out of his players. One thing leads to another, Andrew not only finding himself part of Fletcher's award-winning ensemble, but suddenly its most abused member. It's psychological warfare of the first degree, teacher using every one of his belittling, emotionally manipulative tricks in order to see his prized pupil either rise to the occasion and grab the mantle of genius or wallow in ridicule and failure as his ego is crushed by tone-deaf mediocrity.

Whiplash, based in no small part on the filmmaker's own time spent trying to please the dictatorial leader of his own high school jazz band, is writer/director Damien Chazelle's follow-up to his award-winning debut Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench. Where that movie was quiet, this one has no problem cranking the volume up to 11. Where that drama tread along its narrative path with such subtlety you'd be forgiven for missing some of its more intimate emotional nuances, this one wears its intentions on its sleeve telegraphing all aspects of what its story is and where things are headed right in its very first scene. The films are night and day from one another, and save for the fact each revolves around musicians there's little connective tissue running between them.

That's fine with me, Whiplash a daring, go-for-broke spectacular that focuses on its two main characters with laser-like precision never losing sight of the bigger picture or the themes it's longing to explore. The movie is a cacophony of emotional arrogance run amok, looking at the teacher-student relationship in ways that, while not new, still add plenty of fodder to the conversation. Can greatness be achieved without suffering? How far can a teacher go to bring it out of their students? Does one have to experience pain, negativity and disappointment in order to find the inner strength to rise above and do what no one else has before? Are the worst two words in the English language 'good job,' saying them nothing more than verbal permission for averageness to flourish and blossom?

These are just a few of the questions Chazelle is interested in looking at, and anyone who has ever watched An Officer and a Gentleman, Hoosiers, Stand and Deliver, Any Given Sunday, The Miracle Worker, Miracle, Akeelah and the Bee, The Breakfast Club, The Karate Kid and so many other motion pictures of a similar ilk knows where all this is headed early on. But as hard as the instructors in all of those films could be, for as much as they could push their charges to their respective breaking points and then well beyond, none of them, save maybe Louis Gossett, Jr.'s Sgt. Emil Foley in An Officer and a Gentleman, can remotely compare to Simmon's Professor Fletcher. The man is more Bob Knight than Knute Rockne, more Gordon Gekko than John Keating, so unrelentingly awful in both behavior and action there are not words to describe his grotesque conduct in exacting enough detail.

At the same time, he does understand his students, assesses their skills and their attributes with shocking clarity. More, some of them, erstwhile drummers like Andrew, seem to thrive on the abuse, looking at his vitriol, anger and browbeating as a constant challenge to improve their skills to the point no one anywhere can match them beat for beat and note for note. He gets under his pupils' skins so fully they almost can't help but go so far as to bleed in order to surpass expectation, using every last ounce of want, desire, longing and, yes, talent in order to find success.

Teller, a young actor who instantly shot onto the radar with his stunning debut in Rabbit Hole only to follow that up with turns in second-tier efforts like Footloose, That Awkward Moment and Divergent that were better than the films deserved, delivers a performance that defies belief. For those who thought he transformed himself into a star with his superlative work in The Spectacular Now, his Andrew is another step towards superstardom. He pours himself into the young drummer with pitiless savagery, crafting a central character whose drive and tenacity are relatable yet whose actions are so self-centered and abhorrent he's moderately detestable. There is a fearlessness to this portrait that's stupendous, and whether one likes the kid or hates him and all he allows himself to be transformed into taking your eyes off Teller for a single solitary second is an utter impossibility.

He's matched by Simmons, and if Andrew isn't the most pleasant kid to spend time with then his instructor is downright abominable. There's little about this guy that's redeeming, and whether his heart is in the right place or not his actions are so sickening finding justification for them isn't easy. All the same, the veteran character actor known for films as eclectic as Juno, Spider-Man, The Gift and The Mexican (as well as those omnipresent - and annoying - State Farm commercials) is on fire, rattling off obscenities, put-downs and other verbal lacerations as if he was the Picasso of profanity. He makes the teacher shockingly three-dimensional, finding layers hidden within the persona that, while not making his actions forgivable, in some way does make them understandable, and as such Simmons allows intimate access to Fletcher's interior workings in ways that are hardly comfy.

Chazelle refuses to supply easy answers to any of the film's more loaded questions, offering up a rousing, and in many ways uplifting, finale that in no small way makes one wonder if he is in fact forgiving Fletcher for his misdeeds and proclaiming Andrew's selfishness as a necessary evil for genius to blossom. Anyone who has had a wannabe Drill Sergeant for either a coach or a teacher knows where the jazz conductor is coming from, and while some individuals thrive under such tutelage others can be permanently scarred by the experience.

As such it is during the climax when things get the murkiest, teacher and student engaged in a battle of wills that, ever so slowly, morphs into something altogether different, each in suddenly such astonishing symmetry with the other the musical magic they are on the verge of creating is something remarkable. Is Whiplash a celebration of Fletcher's tactics? Or, instead, is Andrew rebelling in such a way the confrontational professor's only recourse is to assist and aid him in this rat-a-tat-tat insurrection? Whatever the answer, if there even is one, what's never in doubt is that Chazelle's latest is a musical mindblower, the power and the fury of this dramatic paradiddle a vibrant rim shot to the soul that's nothing short of breathtaking.


Seattle South Asian Film Festival 2014 Preview, Capsule Reviews SSAFF includes six films concerning LGBT issues
by Sara Michelle Fetters - SGN A&E Writer

Programmed by local nonprofit Tasveer, an organization founded on the promise to curate thought-provoking artistic work of South Asians through films, forums, visual art, and performances that engage and empower the community, the 9th Seattle South Asian Film Festival presents its most ambitious slate yet. Showcasing 24 features, 17 shorts and with 18 filmmakers currently schedule to attend, the festival promises to be an absorbing showcase highlighting themes and ideas universal in scope yet also reflective of the cultures, people and countries represented.

The schedule includes two documentaries, two narrative features and two shorts revolving around LGBT subject matter, and in the case of the entries from India and Sri Lanka, comment, whether directly or indirectly, on those country's respective draconian laws concerning Lesbian, Gay and Transgender rights. All four of the features are highly worthwhile, especially Nepal's stunning Soongava: Dance of the Orchids, a Lesbian drama that might look like your typical coming-of-age coming out tale, but in the end fascinatingly becomes anything but.

A full schedule along with ticket information can be found at http://ssaff.tasveer.org/2014/. The film festival runs October 31-November 9. Following are short capsule reviews of the four LGBT-themed feature motion pictures screening during the festival, all of which I highly recommend and urge everyone to make the effort to go and see.

And You Thought You Knew Me (Saturday, Nov. 1, 5 p.m., Mobius Hall - UW Bothell) A film that taught me a new acronym, one that makes me shudder just thinking of it again, PAGFB. What's it mean? 'People Assigned Gender Female at Birth.' What's the point? It's the answer to that particular question you learn while watching Pramada Menon's absorbing documentary, each of these five disparate souls becoming activists of one sort another in large part thanks to the cruelty done to them at the time of their respective births. An unforgettable story, their collective tales are both chilling and optimistic, sometimes both at the exact same time. (Plays with In Between Days.)

Frangipani (Saturday, Nov 8., 4 p.m., Roxy Cinema - Renton) Moody, atmospheric love triangle from Sri Lanka, the movie's political agenda in regards to horrific local laws sometimes overshadows its simple, straight-forward and beautifully slight central story, three friends - two men, one woman - living with one another for reasons they cannot openly disclose, yet yearn to flaunt all the same. The movie works best when it lets actions and emotions speak for themselves, and it's only when director Visakesa Chandrasekaram take a more direct approach that things get a little overtly didactic. Still, this is a strong, character-driven drama with surprising moments of light and levity, everything building to a suitably stirring climax that suits all that came before it rather beautifully.

In Between Days (Dui Dhuranir Golpo) (Saturday, Nov. 1, 5 p.m., Mobius Hall - UW Bothell) Shot over a period of 14 months, director Sankhajit Biswas' In Between Days is a surprisingly vibrant, refreshingly honest slice-of-life documentary looking at Transgender Bengali teens Bubai and Chiranjit, best friends who are involved in the local sex trade. Landing jobs at an NGO doing HIV outreach prevention, the pair explore their dreams and desires while also coming to terms with the life they have at this very moment. Perceptive almost to a fault, at less than an hour the film can't help but bring up issues it can't hope to completely dissect in close to enough detail. At the same time, Bubai and Chiranjit's stories are impossible to forget, and the bits of hope and a yearning for a better life that permeate throughout are oftentimes earthshattering in their emotional intensity. (Plays with And You Thought You Knew Me.)

Soongava: Dance of the Orchids (Saturday, Nov. 1, 7 p.m., Mobius Hall - UW Bothell) Nepal's 2013 submission for the Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award, this Lesbian coming-of-age melodrama is a powerful, thought-provoking groundbreaker that's universal in both message and theme. The story of a 22-year-old dancer who ends her engagement to take off with her best friend on an impromptu road trip, the movie is an exhilarating treatise on following one's heart and the sometimes earth-shattering consequences that can oftentimes arise from doing so. Masterful.




UW's World Dance Series and On the Boards: An Exciting Weekend of Dance!
------------------------------
The Black Keys turn it up @ Key Arena
------------------------------
The Case of the Disappearing Laughter
------------------------------
Explore LGBTQ Sci-Fi and Fantasy Fiction at 'Guardians of the Gaylaxy'
------------------------------

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

------------------------------
Northwest News
------------------------------
LETTERS
------------------------------
Bette Midler, Taylor Swift are Seattle-bound next summer
------------------------------
Take a look
------------------------------
2014 Fall Preview - Part II (November & December)
------------------------------
Electrifying Whiplash paradiddles the heart
------------------------------
Seattle South Asian Film Festival 2014 Preview, Capsule Reviews SSAFF includes six films concerning LGBT issues
------------------------------

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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
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

Seattle Gay News - SGN
1605 12 Ave., Ste. 31
Seattle, WA 98122

Phone 206-324-4297
Fax 206-322-7188

email: sgn2@sgn.org
website suggestions: web@sgn.org

copyright Seattle Gay News 2014 - DigitalTeamWorks 2014

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