Comments on

Brokeback Mountain

Original entry posted: Wed Jan 11 21:11:19 2006

pseudonymous @ Wed Jan 11 16:11:19 2006 EST

Although I haven't seen it, I think "The Gay Cowboy Movie" actually might help Brokeback Mountain. Sure, it's definitely more than just "The Gay Cowboy Movie," but if I said "The Gay Cowboy Movie," do you or do you not know exactly what I'm talking about?

And isn't it "the" gay cowboy movie? What? There's another one? And last I checked there were gay cowboys in it and it was a movie. It's not our unfortunate political climate. It's called branding. Whether or not that brand is a term of derision or of mere denotation is a product of our unfortunate political climate.

Will and Grace: Not funny. Allow me to sum up. Will and Grace are neurotic narcissists. Their friends, Jack and Karen, are, if such a thing is possible, more neurotic and more narcissistic than they. Jack and Karen cannot understand why Will and Grace's lives don't revolve entirely around them, and naturally their feelings are hurt from time to time, for which Will and Grace must apologize before reimagining themselves the center of the universe. Oh yeah, Will and Jack are gay.

Thomas @ Wed Jan 11 16:20:46 2006 EST

Actually, I'm not sure it's really a cowboy movie as such. I mean, it's written by the guy who did Lonesome Dove, and the people in it are (technically) cowboys. But the term "cowboy movie" to me says "western," and it's certainly not a western as we typically understand the genre.

Good point about branding. I'll buy that, pardon the pun.

Whether Will and Grace was actually funny isn't necessarily the point (besides, that description goes for just about everything on network TV). I didn't think Philadelphia was a terribly good movie, either. What I was probably trying to express is that these kinds of barrier-breaking salvos in the culture war don't seem to have made any difference, regardless of their quality. I can find examples of movies dating from the forties with almost exactly the same themes. Looking to art for our activism, as I'm of course doing here, is probably a dead end road.

pseudonymous @ Wed Jan 11 16:58:56 2006 EST

I find certain media are too often on the tail end of a cultural shirt, reflecting, amplifying changes that have already been made rather than spurring them.

I think that might be what scares people about Brokeback Mountain - it's not so much the change it's trying to make - it won't change anybody's mind - it's the changes that have already been made that scare you.

pseudonymous @ Wed Jan 11 17:05:17 2006 EST

Thus, Brokeback is great, not because of all the tolerance it will spawn, but because of the tolerance it represents. The movie got made. That in itself is a sort of triumph.

Thomas @ Wed Jan 11 17:07:04 2006 EST

It's just that liberal commie Hollywood again! Damn their tanned and lustrous hides!

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