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{A troublesome threesome} Boyfriends
Directed by Neil Hunter and Tom Hunsinger
Starring James Dreyfus, Mark Sands, Andrew Ableson
A Mongrel Media Release
Available on video
Review by Michael Cottrell


"Are you in a gay relationship? Yes sort of. Ish. Yes. Yes, yes I am."

My friend, well my date in fact stepped out of the cinema after seeing Boyfriends and proclaimed loudly "f!@#ing men!"

{Video box cover} Boyfriends is a low budget British movie about three couples who go off for a weekend at a country cottage. As soon as I heard the idea of a weekend get away I was sure this was going to be a mere "British" version of Terrence McNally's Love! Valour! Compassion! That it is not.

A warning about this movie. Do not take a date to this movie, don't even take a friend who has recently ended a relationship if you are not prepared to sit down after and bemoan over coffee about f!@#ing men!

Boyfriends involves three couples at different stages in their coupling. Paul and Ben have been together for five years and the flame is burning out. Matt and Owen h ave been seeing each oth er for three months. Matt is ready to give him more then just an underwear drawer but by the Sunday truth gets dealt with. The third couple, if they can be called that is Will and Adam. They have been together for one night.

Each story as it unfolds makes you think. "Have you ever fallen i n love on the first night? Yes. And has it been love? No." That dialogue stung. Falling in love at first sight or in the first night can be absolutely exhilarating but as the answer comes, it is not love.

"I wish I could say I was with someone long enough to run around and say I'm bored with you-but that hasn't happened yet." Boyfriends portrays the hard work a relationship is. "Sometimes it's great, sometimes it's two people who have been together for three and a half years and can't think of anything to say except get me that fucking coffee."

Boyfriends stays clear of an hollywoodizing of relationships. There are no buff bodies. No gratuitous sex scenes. The actors present themselves as real living human beings. This lends Boyfriends the atmosphere of a documentary. One which is enhanced by the film style. I assume the grainy film is part of the effects if not I saw a bad version.

Sitting over coffee with my date, both getting over busted relationships, we relived the characters. Each character of movie represented someone we had known and more directly someone we had experienced.

"I thought you were going to introduce me to some well- balanced homosexual couples. Where were they?",asks Adam in the final scene.

Sipping my Latte, hey I was being chic, I commented that The men in Boyfriends are in fact an archetype of ourselves. Each of their story speaks to our own story whether we are gay or straight. My date looked at me at over his coffee and exclaimed,"f!@#ing men!"

Maybe my friends critic is the best critic. Boyfriends will make you think just a little longer about who we are.




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