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22 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

Appalling Nonsense

Author: baker-9 from United States
30 April 2001

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Since this film was made in the 70's when people understood very little about homosexuality, I suppose someone was bound to come up with this absurd scenario. A gay man winds up playing house with a lesbian, then they get married to prevent his being deported.

After discovering each other sexually after a drunken birthday party, they are magically turned into full-fledged heterosexuals, becoming parents in the process. Once the guy begins working for a gay designer, we're setup to think he's going to go back to his old ways. (Spoiler Alert!) Well, he's having an affair all right, but with a female model. But all is well in the end.

This film is written and acted with complete sincerity, making the whole thing look truly clueless by today's standards. Gay life is represented by our hero's largely sexual attachments to wealthy men and trips to a bathhouse, while the heroine has a relationship with a pathologically insecure closeted lesbian who threatens suicide. In other words, the film makes being gay look like a truly depressing dead end existence - one that you can choose to give up when the right person of the opposite sex shows up.

I suppose the bogus "ex-gay" movement could use this film as a recruiting device, except that it's pretty dull.

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17 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

A "different" story indeed!

Author: Goodmovielover from United States
8 June 2005

In order to stop her homosexual friend Albert (Perry King) from being deported back to Belgium, Stella (Meg Foster) decides to marry him. The only other problem with that is that Stella herself is a lesbian. The two have their separate lives when one night after Albert's birthday party, they fall into bed and then into love. Later in the film after falling in love, Stella suspects Albert of cheating and shows up at his job one night late after closing. What she finds will leave the viewer stunned. This is a great film, very original. Perry King and Meg Foster are so good in their roles that it is amazing that they were not better recognized for their work here. Very controversial upon its release in 1978, the "R" rated film is now "PG" in this much more liberal time.

Recently released on DVD, the disc contains a "Making Of" segment on the special features and in it it's stated that the film was based on an actual story so the viewers who say the film is not "real" are mistaken. Everyone is an individual and different people fall in love for different reasons-these are the issues explored in this wonderful film for everyone who has ever loved!

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18 out of 31 people found the following review useful:

Oh no, it can't happen here!

Author: micoder from United States
11 December 2006

This film was seen by my wife and I when it came out in 1978. It was a revelation to us. We actually thought that we were the only gay and lesbian couple who had ever married and had children. Obviously we were wrong. Love may come from where you don't expect it and maybe don't want it. But we both chose that love anyway.

And no, it never changed our sexual orientation. That kind of stuff is for the Christian wackos.

When we were young we both had affairs, but never with the opposite sex. As we aged we stopped having extramarital affairs.

This story is not far fetched. However, the suggestion that they became heterosexuals seems pretty unrealistic to me. My wife and I have been sleeping together for the last 40 years. We are still gay. End of story.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Why did they have to ruin it?

Author: qopus1988 from United States
16 March 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

There be spoilers ahead! When I first saw this movie at the age of 12 or 13 I fell in love with Perry King - a love which has lasted as these years. He seemed more beautiful than Paul Newman and Gary Cooper rolled into one, and he's still looking mighty fine in his 60's in my opinion. But I wish they had had the courage to avoid forcing an unbelievable hetero "happy ending" onto this film. Why not have them realize that they were both still gay and their (platonic) love for each other could help them find other people to love? That would have made much more sense than the candy colored mess that we're given. That said, the LA time capsule aspect is stupendous - but alas, this is not a great movie or even a very good movie. Perry King in cutoff shorts for me is worth the price of admission, but that's probably not true for most people.

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16 out of 31 people found the following review useful:

A truly lovely experience- DO pick this up if you can!

Author: Cilean from Silicon Valley
14 April 2003

This is a film for entertainment; I did not think the world made social commentary from one small film. I personally find this film funny, audacious, and memorable. It is a fantasy not unlike a cinder girl becoming a Princess. This film was done very well I might add, in the 70's a time of the best experiments in film with being able to mention a person's sexuality. This movie is not about a person being homosexual or not, it is however about love, in all it's strange forms. This film does show some of the realities of being gay in the 70's in Hollywood, or in California. Pretty boys being looked after by older not so pretty men. Women who had to stay deeply locked in the emotional closet or risk not having a career. Bathhouses were an integral part of the gay community.

THEN the fantasy begins!! Let us mix a lesbian with a gay and add some liquor and what do we have? Well this movie, which in ANY way was better than that dismal redo "The Next Big Thing". Perhaps someone should have asked the entire crew to see this movie and then try to do better.

I enjoyed this movie when I saw it in the 70's and it still brings a smile to my lips now. I heartily advise anyone who wants a funny, tender movie- to curl up with some popcorn and have some fun. Some people need to lighten up!!! And this is the film you should do it with!

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9 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Love can be found anywhere

21 February 2006

This movie is as unique as it is overlooked......A Different Story is just that, it shows how out of the need to survive or maintain, one can find the capacity to love if you have an open heart as well as an open mind. I first saw this on cable in the late 70's and it truly depicted the limitations of the gay community at the time. I believe this movie was ahead of its time in depicting a little slice of an obscure way of life. It is truly a classic in the sense that it was a precursor to what is now depicted as the extended family. This film should be available on DVD/VHS so that not only the extra ordinary performances of Meg Foster & Perry King can be acknowledged, but to show how far we have come & still have to go where relationships are concerned.

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A True Exploration Of Alternative Lifestyles

Author: johnstonjames from United States
30 October 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

as a gay male i don't like being pigeon holed into any particular category. it's funny how the gay community loves to claim alternative lifestyle status but very rarely likes any one in their own community to step out of the prescribed mold. if you are gay, that's it, bottom line, and any diversity of your sexuality is discarded or questioned. if you're heterosexual you're allowed to be Bi or experiment. it often seems that in the gay community experimenting outside of your gay sexuality is frowned on.

that's why 'A Different Story' still remains a breath of something different decades later. it explores sexual themes that a lot of gay movies don't like to touch on. i mean if you can be latently gay you can probably be latently heterosexual too. and contrary to criticism of the movie, lots of gay people have been married or attracted to the opposite sex.

at the time of release in 1978, a lot of people thought this film wasn't daring enough or too afraid to break convention and be a "all gay" movie. now with the gay network Logo and gay movies more common, the outlook of this movie now seems to be less conventional and breaks a standard mold. the two main character seem very unconventional by current gay standards.

it's very easy to relate to the main protagonist in this story thanks to to very fine performances by Perry King and Meg foster who are both excellent and radiate warmth and depth which helps to make their characters seem human and very fallible.

this is a excellent movie for everyone as long as prejudice doesn't interfere with your viewing. prejudice from both sides, straight and gay which this movie is vulnerable to, unfortunately.

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2 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Different is good.

Author: Poseidon-3 from Cincinnati, OH
31 May 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Considered somewhat daring at the time, but tamer now from years of subsequent film and television projects that further explored the topic of homosexuality, this romantic comedy-drama concerns an unlikely couple. King plays a sexy, gay Belgian (sans accent) who has lived as the plaything of several wealthy men, most recently symphony conductor Donat. When things go rotten in their arrangement, King finds himself staying with Donat's pretty, but sloppy, real estate agent. This kicks off a Felix vs Oscar sort of "Odd Couple" storyline until one day when circumstances lead to the pair standing before a judge in order to get married! The marriage is in name only for a long time, but eventually a real affection develops between the two and it turns physical. However, there may be a limit to how many new tricks an ol' dog like King can learn or re-learn, thus the relationship hits a road bump or two along the way. King is slim, toned, tan and blonde, strutting around in some very skimpy briefs and well-worn pants (and sometimes even less than that!) He gives a committed and heartfelt performance, though occasionally he is seen acting far more feminine than at other times, perhaps due to shifts in acting choices as the filming progressed. (Note the flaming way he acts in the scene with Donat following a party, though he doesn't behave this way again.) Foster is excellent, lending much feeling and passion to a difficult role. She also suffers a bit from inconsistency in her manner and mannerisms, going from chain-smoking slob to immaculately coiffed wife with little or no impetus. Sometimes both actors seem to have worked heavily on the outside of their characters in order to convey inner changes and it does come off a wee bit forced at times (King adopting a butch moustache and wearing three-piece suits is another example that comes to mind.) Still, the actors share great chemistry and clearly worked well together during this film. Curtain is excellent as a neurotic, fatalistic companion of Foster's. Bull and Collentine (spouses in real life as well) appear as Foster's fussy parents. The film had a divisive affect on the gay community then and now. Some saw it as an unrealistic sell-out while others were grateful to be represented at all. To the film's defense, both characters were always presented as having had sex beforehand with both sexes and it is purportedly based on a true story! (The author named Foster's character Stella, after his friend Stella Stevens, though he did not indicate that she was the inspiration for the scenario.) One of the film's flaws is the device of using tiny little episodic scenes, separated by blackouts. This gives the opening portion of the film a choppy feel. The film was made by people who specialized in TV commercials, so perhaps very lengthy sequences were not their forte and, in fact, some of the visuals and scenarios do resemble 1970's TV commercials at times. If one can accept the premise, without finding it unbelievable or offensive, this is a pretty easy and charming diversion featuring two appealing people.

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3 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Funny enjoyable movie

Author: jneill-5 from United States
17 May 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I think it unfortunate that the leading comments on this movie include the words "Clueless and appalling nonsense." I think it is a very funny movie and excellent entertainment. One has to suspend one's disbelief that a homosexual man and a lesbian woman could fall in love, have a child and live together happily ever after. But it is always wonderful to see it played out in a movie and have one's heart warmed. Is it so impossible? There are far more implausible events described in other movies. The acting is good, the script is funny. The only negative comment is that the story could well have ended when the family drives away from its initial house instead of extending on to explore whether the man retains any residual homosexuality.

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