A chronological look at films by, for, or about (or 'by, for, and about') homosexuals in the United States, from 1947 to 2005, from Kenneth Anger's 'Fireworks' to Ang Lee's 'Brokeback ...
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As Michael and Robert, a gay couple in New York, prepare for Robert's departure for a two-year work assignment in Africa, Michael must face Robert's true motives for leaving while dealing ... See full summary »
Ten women, most of them in Vancouver or Toronto, talk about being lesbian in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s: discovering the pulp fiction of the day about women in love, their own first ... See full summary »
A chronological look at films by, for, or about (or 'by, for, and about') homosexuals in the United States, from 1947 to 2005, from Kenneth Anger's 'Fireworks' to Ang Lee's 'Brokeback Mountain'. Talking heads, anchored by critic and scholar B. Ruby Rich, are interspersed with an advancing chronology and with clips from two dozen films. The narrative groups the pictures around various firsts, movements, and triumphs: experimental films, independent films, sex on screen, outlaw culture and bad guys, female romances, films about A.I.D.S. and dying, emergence of romantic comedy, transsexual films, films about diversity and various cultures, and then main-stream Hollywood drama. What might come next? Written by
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Interesting Summary of (Modern, American) Gay Cinema
"Fabulous! The Story of Queer Cinema" serves as an interesting introduction to GLBT cinema over the last 40 years. However anyone who is familiar with the similar documentary, "The Celluloid Closet" (1995), may be somewhat disappointed by "Fabulous!". It is distinctly less ambitious in scope and depth - it spans a shorter period in time (50-60 years) and therefore does not explore homosexuality in the early history cinema - surely a crucial part of 'the history of gay cinema'? Oddly, "Fabulous!" almost totally excludes European and World Cinema while explaining that these were almost the only sources of gay cinema in the dark days of homophobic censorship in the US. On the other hand, the treatment of different ethnic and minority groups (e.g. Asian- and African- Americans) in gay movies is explored in an interesting way.
A wide range of contributors (actors, directors and critics) give their opinions on the development of gay cinema - although this commentary often resembles the shallow contributions found on TV 'best of' compilation programs. The graphics, jumpy editing and music used also give the whole production a rather cheap and 'made for TV' feel.
Where this documentary is strongest is in gathering together a wide collection of (US) gay-related cinema, particularly from the last 20 years. For anyone interesting in exploring gay cinema further these films will provide a good starting-point. A humorous and light-hearted tone is maintained throughout meaning that the documentary should appeal to a wide audience and not just ardent film buffs.
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