Friday, December 09, 2005

The view from 'Brokeback Mountain'

Imagine what insights might be gleaned if we could send a Desert Storm Marine to review the movie “Jarhead” or a murder survivor to review “Capote?” Our readers would be treated to an intense “insider’s” perspective on the story — the story, not the filmmaking.

Tonight, director Ang Lee’s “Brokeback Mountain” — about two young gay cowboys in 1963 Wyoming — opens in a handful of big-city theaters. It will open in Houston on Dec. 16. For now, there are no plans for it to be shown in Southeast Texas ... not a big surprise.

At my newspaper, we asked Ron Douthitt, a novelist and screenwriter who also had a gay relationship in his youth, to reflect on the film, which he saw in a November screening. We hoped his perspective would add to our readers’ understanding of this controversial story in this film version of Pulitzer Prize-winner Annie Proulx’s short story and Pulitzer Prize-winner Larry McMurtry’s script. An excerpt:

"If you’ve ever felt the kind of love where the feeling so far transcended the sex, when spending time with that person anywhere is all that matters, then this story is for you. If you’ve ever shared the kind of love, when the thought of just knowing if the person with whom you share that bond is going to be safe and all right — with or without you around — allows you to sleep at night, then this story will touch you deeply. The only unusual element is that the story revolves around two men."


Solomon Grundy said...

They're actually bi shepherds, not gay cowboys!

I used to be a real bi cowboy, so I like to be precise about these things.

I wrote about it on my blog, check it out.

Ron Franscell said...

Solomon is absolutely right about the "cowboy" vs. "shepherd" thing. One simply can't argue the technicality.

I greew up in Wyoming and even in my neck of the woods, anybody who worked on a ranch of any kind was generally dubbed a "cowboy," so maybe that's what the Hollywood producers were thinking (if they thought at all.) And in "Brokeback Mountain" one of the characters is a rodeo participant ... a "cowboy."

And on the issue of "gay" vs "bi" Solomon is also technically correct. Both characters have female relationships as well.

But for the unwashed masses, "that bi-shepherd movie" just doesn't roll off the tongue like "that gay cowboy movie."

Sandy said...

Why would this movie not play in Beaumont? It's nominated for a Golden Globe as best picture. I'll be very disappointed if the theater owners don't show it. They show a lot of crap much worse than this could ever be.

Houston said...

"Gay men looking for gratuitous sex between two of Hollywood's hottest stars: You'll be sadly disappointed."

Because we all know that the only thing Gay men are looking for is gratuitous sex. We don't know nothing about love or real emotions.

You can send that little closet case with the internalized homophobia back into the closet for my part. That last line was incredibly offensive.

Rightwingsparkle said...

Hi Ron! Hope everything is well with you.


I don't get your criticism. I thought that was a lovely review of the film. The last line was an obvious slam to hollywood who wants gratuitious sex of any kind in just about every movie. I don't think it was a slam on the general gay population.

And I think he described real emotions beautifully. you need to read the review again.

Anonymous said...

Dear Ron, I have been on the net checking out the reviews and comments on BBM. At first I saw many times the word "brave" used in the making of the film. I wondered if this was necesssary but after reading more on BBM I would say that you are brave for even commenting on the movie. You would think it marked the end of Western Civilization, the End of Days, the Victory of Communism and the Triumph of the Gay Agenda all in one. Than you for being 'brave' and printing an honest evaluation of the film.