LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth
|News from the Rehoboth Beach Film Society
Coming Soon to a Theater Near You
Sound familiar? Film advertisements use this marketing jargon to generate excitement for the next big film. Whether it works is questionable, but one can be sure that rarely is a film that has a prominent GLBT subject or characters promoted this way. Sure there was the huge success of Brokeback Mountain and Oscar sweetheart Capote, but those two films are exceptions.
While the remainder of 2008 may not be a banner year for GLBT films making the big time, there are certainly a few gems (at least on paper) that are worth getting excited about. So...be sure to see the following at a theater near you.
Savage Grace. Known for his 1992 indie hit Swoon as well as several small budget, semi-experimental films, Savage Grace is directed by Tom Kalin and is based on the award-winning book. This intense film is a true story about Barbara Daly, wife of the heir of the Bakelite plastics fortune, and her obscene relationship with her gay son. You can expect Kalin's characteristic cerebral wit, perversity and aesthete's eye in this portrait of the lifestyles and mental collapses of the rich and famous. Told in six acts set between 1946 and 1972, the film is narrated by Tony Baekeland (a waifish Eddie Redmayne), the only child of the stunning but neurotic Barbara (Moore) and the raffish Brooks (Stephen Dillane), a descendant of the inventor of plastic. Barbara is wildly pretentious, insecure and desperate for affection, so when she produces Tony, the perfect heir, she crushes him with her love and her neediness. As he grows up their relationship becomes more and more degenerate, especially as they are confined to a globe-spanning social bubble of the ultra-wealthy where anything goes. With no boundaries and considerable opportunity for transgression, tragedy is inevitable. Dark and queasy, Savage Grace boasts an oppressive atmosphere and ornately mannered dialogue, so don't expect a traditional Hollywood narrativethis is far more fascinating stuff. Brought to life by a stellar cast led by Moore in an astounding and brave performance, the characters resemble delicate crystalline figures trapped in an amoral world. [2008, runtime: 97 minutes, Not rated]
Mama Mia. This mega smash hit stage play turned movie is about 18-year-old Sophie Sheridan (Amanda Seyfried) who has a problem. It is almost her wedding day and she doesn't know who her father is. It could be any of her mother's (Meryl Streep) past suitors: Sam Carmichael (Pierce Brosnan), Bill Austin (Stellan Skarsgrd), or Harry Bright (Colin Firth). The only way for her to find out is to invite all three to her wedding to see what happens. Bear in mind that the story unfolds through ABBA songs. So while it may not be "gay" it is rare when the words ABBA and gay are not uttered together. The cast has been rumored to embrace their inner ABBA and have toured many a karaoke bar to show off their new found talents.
Bruno. Does the name Sacha Baron Cohen ring any bells? How about Borat? Well Cohen is the actor who performs a variety of outrageous characters including Bruno, a gay Austrian fashionist who in this incarnation takes his show on the road to America. With no real script and no real story, it is a mockumentary that is sure to skewer just about anything and everything gay. So if you take yourself too seriously, you might want to take a pass on this one as it is sure to be a no- holds-barred event.
Milk. Directed by gay director Gus Van Sant and written by Dustin Lance Black, Milk is the story of California's first openly gay elected official Harvey Milk (played by Sean Penn) who was assassinated along with Mayor George Moscone at City Hall by San Francisco Supervisor Dan White (Josh Brolin). Emile Hirsch has been cast as gay rights activist Cleve Jones, an intern and close ally of Milk's, who went on to found the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt. James Franco will play Scott Smith, Milk's lover and campaign manager.
Bruce Cohen and Dan Jinks, the producing duo who have brought to the screen such gems as American Beauty and the TV show Pushing Daises, bring their award winning touch to Milk. The film's budget was rumored to be around 27 million dollars, a figure that Bruce Cohen denies stating that it was a project that so many people believed in that they worked for well below their normal salaries.
Stay tuned for information about films that will not be coming soon to a theater near you.
For more information about the films, visit the Film Society web site at rehobothfilm.com. For screening times, call the Movies at Midway at 302-645-0200.
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth, Vol. 18, No. 05 May 16, 2008