In Honor of Iowa, This Post is Extra Gay
April 4, 2009

So I’m sure that you’ve heard the excellent news by now, but seriously, y’all:

iowa-the-best2

It is always exceptional news to hear when another state recognizes that it is unconstitutional to ban gay marriage, and the fact that it’s Iowa is particularly exceptional.  You don’t really expect such a radical political change to come from the midwest.  You just expect potatoes and corn.  All of us New Yorkers should feel particularly embarrassed today for feeling like we’re such a progressive state.  Apparently it’s Iowa that’s for gay lovers.  New York’s just for smug jackasses.  Whoops!

Anyways, I decided I’d that, in honor of a little piece of history being made, I’d keep it light share a few of my favorite homo things.  First off, we have the inimitable diva, Barbara Stanwyck, in A Walk on the Wild Side.  I could bother to set this up with a little plot exposition, but where’s the fun in that?  Just know that these are the 17 greatest seconds of performance any actress has ever delivered.  EVER:

That, my friends, is not camp.  That is exquisiteness.  I like to imagine that Barbara Stanwyck’s performance is so fabulously intense and perfectly delivered that it physically hurls Capucine onto the couch with the strength of a perfectly placed bitchslap, kinda like a gay version of the Force push.  Did I just reference Star Wars?  I just said something totally gay and totally nerdy.  Two-for-one special on quips, y’all.  You’re welcome.

Equally homoriffic, yet in a completely different medium of pure fabulosity, is the music video for U2’s “Discotheque”:

A friend said these words to me after I came out during freshman year of college: “I always new that you were gay because you even liked 90s U2.”  Truer words have never been spoken.    It’s U2, drenched in a Jacques-Demy-in-neon aesthetics and extolling the virtues of the dance floor.  I’d later realize that this is what we consider high camp; at the time when I first saw this in middle school, I just knew it as awesome.  Besides Lady Gaga, this really is the gayest thing in pop culture.  And it came from four straight men!  Go figs.

But mostly, I think we need this little bit of homoness to honor these changing times:

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Oscar Clip Roundup: Does The UK Success of Mamma Mia! REALLY Indicate the Return of the Musical?
February 23, 2009

Last night’s Oscars had some truly wonderful moments.  And then there was that whole damn Slumdog Millionaire sweep.  Blech.

But there were some wonderful moments!  Like how cute was it when Kate Winslet’s dad whistled to her?  

Answer: the cutest!  Added to that, her speech felt wonderfully unrehearsed and genuine.

Or when Penelope Cruz won supporting actress for her feisty turn in Vicky Cristina Barcelona?  How great was that?

Awwww, she thanked Almodovar!  That’s more adorable than a dozen terrier puppies in my book!

And really, how gay–in all the best, most politically-forward-thinking ways possible–was this year’s Oscars?  Consider exhibit A:

Oh, and of course, exhibit B:

So gay.  I found both Dustin Lance Black’s and Sean Penn’s wins (along with their speeches) to be two of the moist poignant and affirming moments of the evening, blissful reminders that art and politics need not remain separate spheres of discourse; each can enrich the other, and together they capture something truly transcendental.  

Also, their speeches made me cry, but really, what doesn’t?  Making me cry is less of a litmus test for greatness so much as a litmus test for ensuring I still have a pulse.   

Anyways!

There was one moment that truly stuck out for me in this year’s ceremony, and that was this one.  Be sure to watch it all, because it will make you re-evaluate your current understanding of the world:

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The Bestest: I’m Here to Recruit You to Buy “Milk” on DVD
February 7, 2009

I literally just read this and spilled my milk (WHOOOOOOOOOOOOAH!  Puns are the best) after I read this.

But seriously, though, why aren’t you already excited about the impending release of Milk on DVD?  ‘Cos need I remind you?  I shouldn’t, but here goes:

Excellent.  You’ve been reminded, so let us continue.

Milk stands as a precedent for American cinema.  Brokeback Mountain was great, but that movie was also bogged down in the politics of homo-self-loathing.  Milk escapes that space and craves for something different.  What if we respected ourselves as mere human beings that deserve basic, inalienable rights?  What if we spoke out and verbalized a longing for such a respect from the rest of this nation, or any nation, that refuses such a simple, human recognition?  Milk, as a movie, doesn’t exist in closets, nor does it even bother to come out of them.  It explodes them.  For once, cinematically, we begin to get answers to the questions that really matter.

But let’s get serious (if we weren’t enough already).

In a time where the images of homosexuals in mainstream media are constructed by flaming queens and closet cases, Milk stands as a socio-political testament to the notion that we are just as much like you as anyone else.  No other film this year has been so pointedly political yet so simultaneously cinematically beautiful.  If nothing else, it merges documentary material and original footage as though we were seeing a news broadcast in such a seamless fashion that the walls between documentary and fiction crumble in such a way that you practically forget this isn’t a documentary.  Brilliant.  And then there’s that Danny Elfman score.  Perfection.

I understand that we live in a time where every dollar means so much more (both politically and in our pockets, if nothing else), and that is why I say: buy Milk.  Or rent it at the very least.  You won’t regret it.  Sean Penn is the best.  Seriously, give him the Oscar. NOW.

And as for that film?  Well, it gives us hope.  And hope itself is something to matter in these times.

Thankee, DVDactive.

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