Five Gay Films You May Have Missed
As gay characters and stories continue to move more into the mainstream in Hollywood, films like Brokeback Mountain, Kill Your Darlings, I Love You Philip Morris and Behind The Candelabra are thrust into the public conscience through the use of big name stars, large budgets and critical acclaim. But there are a number of hidden gems out there which may just have passed you by. Whether they are low budget affairs, have unknown actors or are foreign films which do not garner much publicity, there are some great films out there which can delight, charm and move you. So here are five films which you may have missed, but are well worth catching up with.
The Broken Hearts Club
In this romantic comedy, a group of friends based in West Hollywood aspire for the contented living of their patriarch, Jack. Patrick is the average joe, who struggles to fit into a world of beautiful men like Cole, an actor who finds breaking hearts all too easy. Howie overanalyses his relationship with his boyfriend, Kevin struggles with his new found sexuality and Dennis wonders whether he should be hanging around with them at all. This gentle comedy is a lovely ensemble piece with will make you laugh and cry. It’s a refreshing look at gay life starring Dean Cain, Zach Braff, John Mahoney and Timothy Olymphat.
In this German coming of age tale, teams of rowers descend on a camping ground for a week of training and competition, and, as many of the young men hope, some fun sharing the camp with the female rowers. But when one of the female teams is replaced by a gay rowing team, Tobi is forced to confront his pent up feelings for his best friend and teammate, Achim, who is already involved with his girlfriend. As the competitive tension between the teams increase, so does Tobi’s desire for Achim, and his friendship with gay rower Leo grows. But matters culminate in a confrontation in the midst of a summer storm which threatens not only to destroy the camp, but also the team. Once again, don’t be put off by the subtitles – this is an endearing film which tenderly addresses the burgeoning sexuality of youth.
Far from Heaven
Far From Heaven is a drama which follows Cathy, a contented suburban housewife in 1950’s Connecticut, whose seemingly perfect life falls apart as she discovers her husband, Frank, is gay. As their marriage falls apart, Frank turns to alcohol and domestic violence as he struggles to come to terms with the fact that his conversion therapy has failed. Cathy, however, finds comfort in her friendship with Raymond, a black man who is the son of Cathy’s late gardener. But the mixture of homophobia, sexism and racism can only lead to complications. This Oscar nominated film is packed full of quality performances, a well written story and is a respectful visual homage to the 1950’s style of filmmaking.
Cal is a tough gang member, who hides his closeted sexuality from his fellow gang members. Cal masks his true feelings by having random sex with strangers, drug taking and violence. But his life is thrown into chaos when he intervenes in an unprovoked assault by his gang on a young French student, Olivier. As a result, Cal and Olivier fall for each other, but all the time, the inner conflict for Cal increases and he fears the consequences from his ever increasingly suspicious gang members. This British film is brutal and uncompromising in places and was critically acclaimed when released.
So these are my recommendations for great gay films which may have passed you by. What are yours? Use the comments box below to share those gay films which you think others are missing out on.