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Old 11-07-2005, 12:42 PM   #1
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Brokeback Mountain

it hasn't opened yet, but it looks like this film is both setting itself up to be a big-time Oscar contender, as well as a fascinating cultural moment.

consider two postings i came across this morning during my routine trip through the blogs ...

[q]XXXXX DRUDGE REPORT XXXXX SUN NOV 06, 2005 19:28:02 ET XXXXX

HOLLYWOOD ROCKED: 'GAY COWBOY' MOVIE BECOMES AN OSCAR FRONTRUNNER

Arriving with nudity and explicit gay sex scenes between two cowboys, UNIVERSAL/FOCUS FILMS's BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN has quietly become an award season frontrunner, interviews with Academy members reveal.

"It could very well be the last film standing at this year's Oscars," a top Hollywood producer not associated with the film explained from Hollywood.

"There was not a dry eye in the house at the screening at Telluride [Film Festival in Colorado]," says the producer, who asked not to be named out of respect for the cast and crew of the producer's own Oscar contender. "Watch it come out of the gate at the Golden Globes with super controversy."

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS critic Jack Mathews predicts the gay cowboy movie, which takes place in Wyoming, may be "too much for red-state audiences, but it gives the liberal-leaning Academy a great chance to stick its thumb in conservatives' eyes."

Director Ang Lee's movie starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger won the Golden Lion, the top prize at the Venice Film Festival earlier this fall.

But will a movie even Madonna calls "shocking" sit with the heartland?

Playwright and lifelong Wyomingite tells the STAR-TRIBUNE of Casper this week that she has never encountered a gay cowboy, and doesn't think it's right for Hollywood to portray Wyoming as a state with gay cowboys.

Her message to the writers of BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN: “Don't try and take what we had, which was wonderful -- the cowboys that settled the state and made it what it was -- don't ruin that image... There's nothing better than plain old cowboys and the plain old history without embellishing it to suit everyone."

Meanwhile, Michell Howard of the state's Travel and Tourism Division says her agency is already hearing a buzz that people in other countries are expressing interest in visiting Wyoming because of the film.

“It's gotten rave reviews from the international community,” she said. “I don't know if they're more tolerant or something, but they're viewing it as a great Western movie.”

Developing...

http://www.drudgereport.com/flash3bm.htm

[/q]



[q]END OF GAY CULTURE WATCH: The movie, "Brokeback Mountain," looks set to be a fascinating cultural moment. What's interesting to me is that it takes the question of same-sex love and places it firmly in the center of American folklore, especially the cowboy West. Now, of course gay cowboys existed and exist. But that two very hot Hollywood leading men would be prepared to take on these roles, that a director as accomplished as Ang Lee would direct the movie, and that a studio as mainstream as Universal would produce it strikes me as a significant development. A few years back, it would have been unthinkable for bankable, heterosexual stars like Ledger and Gyllenhaal to have embraced such a venture. But they are of the generation that is mercifully over the bigotries of old Hollywood. Think of the greatest actor of his generation, Philip Seymour Hoffman. Three of his most powerful, accomplished, career-making performances - in "Boogie Nights," "Flawless," and "Capote," - are of gay men, each very different, each very human, each poignantly and brilliantly brought to life. In his case, taking on homosexual roles has helped Hoffman reach the career heights he now commands. Ledger and Gyllenhal take this to a new level, because, unlike Hoffman, they are handsome beyond measure, and have played macho heterosexuals for years. Now they get to play macho homosexuals - itself an inversion and abolition of a certain stereotype. I have yet to see the movie, so I cannot judge it on its merits. But so far, its potential cultural impact looks riveting. If it wins a wide audience, it will be one more sign that the old cliches of "gay culture" are indeed dying fast. I think Red State America is less fearful of the truth than its political representatives. But we'll see, I guess.

http://www.andrewsullivan.com/

[/q]

[q]MADONNA HAILS 'BRAVE' GYLLENHAAL AND LEDGER


Also see:
MADONNA
JAKE GYLLENHAAL
HEATH LEDGER


Superstar MADONNA has hailed "brave" Hollywood hunks JAKE GYLLENHAAL and HEATH LEDGER for portraying gay cowboys in their forthcoming movie BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN.

Madonna was treated to an early screening of the ANG LEE-directed movie, by one of the movie's producers, and is delighted the actors have taken on such controversial roles.

The MATERIAL GIRL enthuses to British gay magazine Attitude, "I loved it. Shocking. Surprising. The guy who financed my movie did that too. He's a very mild mannered chap from Minnesota and we'd just screened the latest cut of my film and he asked if I wanted to see it.

"I was thinking, 'OK, this really square, straight guy,' and he showed me this movie. It's amazing.

"They're really good those boys and they did a great job. It's very brave of them."

http://www.contactmusic.com/new/xmlf...20and%20ledger

[/q]

and here are some early reviews: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/brokeback_mountain/



what's going on here? is homophobia, the last legislated prejudice, finally going to die?

and, once again, can we credit Hollywood -- that oft-bashed by the Right community -- for leading the way with a provocative film? for all that it does wrong, Hollywood has produced movies that have sparked conversations and might be credited for forcing people to talk about things such as race (Guess Who's Coming to Dinner), AIDS (Philadelphia), American genocide (Dances With Wolves), and rape (The Accused) long, long before Washington is able to do so.
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Old 11-07-2005, 12:57 PM   #2
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I'm a bit sceptical of films that use explicit sex scenes to make a point to be honest.

My Own Private Idaho was an example of a film that showed a gay relationship without needing to show explicit sex. Or to take another example the British television series 'Brideshead Revisited' where there was an obvious subtext that the two main characters were at times a little more than just friends.
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Old 11-07-2005, 01:09 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by financeguy
I'm a bit sceptical of films that use explicit sex scenes to make a point to be honest.

My Own Private Idaho was an example of a film that showed a gay relationship without needing to show explicit sex. Or to take another example the British television series 'Brideshead Revisited' where there was an obvious subtext that the two main characters were at times a little more than just friends.


i think this is interesting ... i was originally going to ask if a graphic heterosexual sex scene would cause the same degree of skepticism in you, but then i thought that, well, yes, a graphic gay sex scene is by definition shocking since it really hasn't been done before in mainstream hollywood movies (no, "showgirls" doesn't count) nor by genuine hollywood stars.

i don't think either of us has seen the movie, so i don't think we can say whether or not the "graphic" (keep it mind, it is Drudge) sex scene is appropriate or gratuitious, but i would argue that there might actually be a point to simply having a gay sex scene as graphic as a hetereosexual sex scene, and to have male nudity in the way that we often have female nudity.

since identity for a homosexual person is ultimately predicated upon being attracted -- physically and emotionally -- to a member of the same gender, and it seems as if the vast majority of the film focuses on their emotional relationship, it might give me pause for there not to be a sex scene --- akin to how gay men and women are now allowed to be characters on sitcoms and in dramas, but they are not allowed to have fully fleshed out emotional and sexual lives in the same way that a typical straight character is allowed to.
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Old 11-07-2005, 02:14 PM   #4
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They're damned if they do and damned if they don't with the gay sex scene. I frankly would be irritated if it wasn't there.
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Old 11-07-2005, 03:18 PM   #5
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i Wonkette:

[q]A reader was struck, as were we, by the appearance of "Brokeback Mountain" scuttlebutt (heh) amid the usual talk of severe weather and bad liberals on The Drudge Report. It seems out of place... or is it? Also, If "Love is a force of nature," hot gay naked cowboy action is a category seven![/q]
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Old 11-07-2005, 04:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
...i would argue that there might actually be a point to simply having a gay sex scene as graphic as a hetereosexual sex scene, and to have male nudity in the way that we often have female nudity.

since identity for a homosexual person is ultimately predicated upon being attracted -- physically and emotionally -- to a member of the same gender, and it seems as if the vast majority of the film focuses on their emotional relationship, it might give me pause for there not to be a sex scene --- akin to how gay men and women are now allowed to be characters on sitcoms and in dramas, but they are not allowed to have fully fleshed out emotional and sexual lives in the same way that a typical straight character is allowed to.
Yup. If you can't handle it, then no need to get worked up; just don't go see it. (*not aimed at anyone in particular*)

And although I realize there are additional prejudices involved here, I can't help being reminded (i.e. by the likely prospect of widespread straight male revulsion) of how a similar reaction tends to occur when heterosexual sex scenes feature male nudity in anything beyond the most brief and glancing way. "Ugh gross, I don't want to see some other guy's..." as if heterosexual women's appreciation of male bodies is not also a cameraworthy perspective.
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Old 11-07-2005, 05:36 PM   #7
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Jake Gyllenhaal was Donnie Darko, wasn't he?

Would I be grossly misinterpreted/misunderstood if I said I had as much interest in this as I do in typical Meg Ryan-esque romances based on heterosexual relationships - which is slightly below zero? There's no doubt a need for movies like this to be made, to attempt to assuage the "anti" sentiment, but I am quite frankly never going to be ready to jump on some novelty bandwagon of support for something I deem no more important or interesting or worthy than another of equal value.
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Old 11-07-2005, 05:43 PM   #8
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I think when I talked about his movie here before I found an article that said the relationship is handled in a mature, beautiful way..that it focuses on the fact that they have a real love relationship first and foremost. It's based on a book so I assume they try to be faithful to the book.

I have no issue w/ watching a sex scene, no more than I would one between a man and a woman on film. Any sex scene that's not tastefully done and is more porn than erotic just isn't attractive to me. That would make me uncomfortable, not the fact that it is two men.

I think in the trailer it appears they are in bed and kissing.

Oh and for shame, gay cowboys yeah, I bet no single cowboy in Wyoming is gay..
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Old 11-07-2005, 05:46 PM   #9
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I can't wait for this film.

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Old 11-07-2005, 05:55 PM   #10
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I wont be watching this movie, I stay away from all movies with any kind of sex scenes, and nudity etc.. I dont understand why they have to show this in the majority of movies, can someone please explain this to me.
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Old 11-07-2005, 06:03 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Angela Harlem
Jake Gyllenhaal was Donnie Darko, wasn't he?

Would I be grossly misinterpreted/misunderstood if I said I had as much interest in this as I do in typical Meg Ryan-esque romances based on heterosexual relationships - which is slightly below zero? There's no doubt a need for movies like this to be made, to attempt to assuage the "anti" sentiment, but I am quite frankly never going to be ready to jump on some novelty bandwagon of support for something I deem no more important or interesting or worthy than another of equal value.


it's supposed to be a magnificent film. the director is Ang Lee. if it were about straight people, i'd want to see it because of all the buzz it's getting as some kind of cinematic masterpiece.

but if you have no interest, then you have no interest. i don't take that as being homophobic.

it's all about taste.

yes, Jake Gywyulwjelrkw;eojkrpqoj was Donnie Darko.

fucked-up film, that.
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Old 11-07-2005, 06:21 PM   #12
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Looking forward to this.

Will heterosexual women *love* this like they loved My Own Private Idaho. Why do stereotypes only focus on men who like to watch lesbians? Some women actually get hot watching two men.
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Old 11-07-2005, 06:21 PM   #13
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Quote:
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I wont be watching this movie, I stay away from all movies with any kind of sex scenes, and nudity etc.. I dont understand why they have to show this in the majority of movies, can someone please explain this to me.

Simple answer = $$$

Artistic answer = sex/nudity exist in real life


How sex & nudity are used will vary depending on the strength of the script, ability of the actors and the confidence of the director.
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Old 11-07-2005, 06:27 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Some women actually get hot watching two men.
Really? Why I never..I have no earthly idea what you mean

Seriously that is a good point..I think it's "funny", and maybe telling, that some men think lesbianism is so "hot" yet they are seemingly so threatened somehow by the idea of two men, watching two men in a movie sex scene, whatever
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Old 11-07-2005, 06:30 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
How sex & nudity are used will vary depending on the strength of the script, ability of the actors and the confidence of the director.


i agree.

can you think of an example where you thought a reasonably graphic sex scene was artistically appropriate?
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