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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a new documentary from filmmaker Kirby Dick and it is a
Outrage looks at notable people in American politics who actively fight against any legislation that may help gay Americans achieve the same equal rights enjoyed by heterosexuals. But the twist is, these politicians are themselves gay and are living a hypocritical double life.
The film also looks at various journalists, mostly from the independent and underground press who investigate gay rumors and then confront the guilty with the truth and in doing so, effectively "out" them.
Outrage makes the salient point that the reason so many of these intrepid journalists come from the non-mainstream media is because the mainstream media outlets simply prefer to ignore these kinds of stories, in part because of guilt over their own complicity in demonizing something that is not wrong, i.e. being gay.
But those people expecting a salacious film full of trashy rumor and innuendo will be disappointed. Outrage is a well researched and balanced documentary that takes a difficult topic and still manages to find moments of humor without sacrificing the necessary seriousness.
And this topic is deadly serious. People have died as a result of closeted gay politicians voting against AIDS funding and hate crimes legislation. And the elected officials who do that while still enjoying the "gay" lifestyle are beyond despicable, they are downright criminal.
It's no surprise that most of the hypocrites are conservative Republicans and Outrage addresses why there is such a clear disparity between the humongous number of hypocritical politicians among Republicans and the vastly fewer number among Democrats.
As it is explained, when Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter ran for the Presidency in 1976, at that time, it could be argued that both the Republican Party and the Democratic Party were about equal in their support for gay rights.
But starting with Ronald Reagan and continuing downward to George W., the Republican Party has made a dangerous Faustian pact with the arrogant and bigoted leaders of the Christian Right (which is neither).
So, in exchange for plenty of money and votes, Republican candidates have been forced to adopt their hateful anti-gay lunacy, along with their misogyny and complete religious intolerance.
This means that many decent Republican candidates who are firm believers in solid Republican values of small government and creating a pro-business climate are now forced to go along with idiotic policies they don't agree with like banning gay marriage or forbidding adoption by gay couples.
But they have to do it or they won't get the cash or votes they need to get elected in some parts of the country. This is a very sad state of affairs and the Christian Right will eventually destroy the Republican Party, if they have not already done so. You have been warned!
Much of the film looks at some recent, but noteworthy cases of famous gay men who have been caught in double lives like former New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevy and former Arizona Senator Jim Kolbe.
It is completely amazing that all of them, to a person says that finally coming out of the closet was the best thing that ever happened to them with Jim McGreevy saying it most eloquently when he says (I'm paraphrasing) "the only right value is living the truth, not someone else's conception of the truth".
But, for every breath of fresh honesty, there are ten douche-bags like Idaho Senator Larry Craig. This sanctimonious fool has been rumored to be gay for his entire career and was eventually arrested for soliciting sex from a cop in an airport bathroom, and the man still denies he's gay.
But, you know something? I believe him. Senator Larry Craig can engage in sodomy or fellatio all day, every day and that won't make him gay. It just makes him a guy that likes homo-sex.
Outrage even manages to make you feel sorry for the supremely deluded Larry Craig. Really, a guy with this much cognitive dissonance affecting the intimate parts of his life is a man in real, demonstrable psychological pain.
He needs our compassion. He needs psychiatric help. What he doesn't need is a vote in the Senate.
It's the same way I feel sorry for an alcoholic who can't stop drinking, I understand it's difficult, but that doesn't mean I'm going to let you drive a car.
Outrage, director Kirby Dick combines very excellent interviews with a treasure trove of local and national news clips that make the filmmakers points with a hefty sense humor combined with a political stridency that you would think would get tiring, but doesn't.
I happened to see the film tonight at a Preview Screening with Kirby Dick in attendance answering questions and he proved to be as quick witted and knowledgeable as his film.
If Outrage plays anywhere near you, please take the time to see it or most certainly add it to your Netflix queue when it is available on DVD
Here is a much better logistical argument.
1.The government is involved in marriage.
2.All adult citizens of the United States are guaranteed equal protection under law.
3.Therefore, the government has two choices.
A.Not be involved with marriage at all
B.Treat all adult citizens equally
This whole debate is not complicated guys. So if you do not like the idea of gay marriage get used to it, because the authors of the constitution laid down the groundwork for this centuries ago.
p.s. as for your "slippery slope" theory about people one day marrying their pets, it should first be noted that a pet does not have a choice in the matter so it would not be able to be defined as marriage. The pet would not even know that it had been married. In other words, that part of your comments is laughable, and can be construed as very rude. Very similar to a comment like this, "I mean, why would anyone be religious, thats just left over tradition from cavemen." Don't be inconsiderate of others please.
Most of the comments left previously do not address the actual legal
aspects of this. The worst offender is lady moon.
The Constitution of the U.S. guarantees each and every one of us Freedom of (and FROM) religion. The separation of Church and State is VERY important in this issue. The word "marriage" is semantics, yet it is the most commonly used term world-wide and that is why advocates use it in attempting to secure the rights they were born with but are being denied.
It is organized religion which is fighting this tooth and nail. Yet it is not organized religion which issues "marriage" licenses; It is states, counties, and cities. States who have changed their constitutions denying same-sex marriage will eventually lose this fight because it it is unconstitutional (at the Federal level) to deny any group the same rights as others.
Granting same-sex couples the right to marry will in no way affect organized religion. Why? Because of their right to practice their religion(s) without government interference; "The Freedom of religion" will protect them, which is as it should be.
Additionally, saying those rights are available through various legal avenues is ridiculous! Does a heterosexual couple have to pay (as much as) $60,000.00 to secure only SOME of the rights? No.
And I'm not gay - I have been happily married to the same woman for over 20 years. I just happen to believe that denying a segment of society the same rights that others enjoy is wrong. Plain and simple. Unfortunately, just as was the case for inter-racial marriages until 1967, it is going to take the US Supreme Court to guarantee those rights.
Kirby Dick's attitude to material that's a 'no-no' is to say "yes-yes!"
His previous film, a near masterpiece chronicling the hypocrisy of the
MPAA on American film censorship since the inception of the NC-17
rating, served as an indictment while also having some fun. While a
sense of fun only springs up on occasion in Outrage he still gets right
what needs to be shown: an in-depth look at the rampant hypocrisy of
government's 'in-the-closet' stance. Gay politicians rarely come out of
said closet - in the film we see two such promininent figures
interviewed at length, NJ governor Jim McGreevey and Massachusetts rep
Barney Frank - and Dick's aim with the documentary is to seek out the
hows and whys. It's poignant when it needs to be, but above all else it
serves up information we as the public should know about figures. It's
a truth-to-power assemblage on public figures who, time and time again,
have voted against gay and AIDS rights (it may not surprise some to
know it's Republicans who are the ones most in the closet-side) while
denying what people can see outright.
Dick frames his doc on two key figures, one being Larry Craig, the disgraced congressman who was caught in a bathroom doing something that, perhaps, was equatable to what he described Bill Clinton as doing in the mid 90s. He propositioned a cop for 'something' and fervently denied it in public, despite allegations that there had been other incidents in the past suggesting more than likely that he was and has been in the closet. It's been one of the great follies of the past couple of years, and opened up the discussion that appears in the film (Craig, it should be added, has something like a 16% voting record on gay rights through his career).
The other figure, not with as much national notoriety as Craig, is Florida governor Charlie Crist, a "bachelor" who had married once and quickly divorced in the 70s and remained a single man for as long as anyone could tell - not to mention having a chief aid allegedly going with him around the world on vacations (the trick being that one would go the day before and the other the day after - every vacation for *decades*), and denied up and down being possibly, at all, gay. Despite all matters on the contrary, Crist denies it (after going through a girlfriend and another wife during and after the election), and continues to put fervent anti-gay judges on the state court.
Dick isn't out to "out" anyone of the closet - at least, anyone that would rather be kept private. But these are public figures, and the aim is that of This Film is Not Yet Rated: open up the lid, look inside, and see what makes this subject tick to hell. And with Washington and US politics and media, there's so much to mine and Dick and his team do a very good job. Hell, we even get Ed Koch! Who knew?
I walked into this film with quite a bit of ambivalence on "outting"
anyone regarding their sexual orientation. True, it would be nice to
live in a world where that isn't or shouldn't be an issue.
The phenomenon of "interalized self-hatred" is something I was introduced to in the early 1990's. It may not be the reason someone--in particular a closeted homosexual--takes a position on a particular political issue, yet this film lines up a number of politicians and people who work in Washington's legislative community and lays out quite convincingly the argument that bigotry indeed is at work in our Nation's capitol, and the suppression of a group of people's rights is achieved through collusion with people who cannot or will not be honest with themselves or the people they represent.
Does exposing these individuals accomplish anything other than the satisfaction of calling a spade a spade? This film makes the case that, yes, in more than a few cases it is worthwhile.
A superb example of the art of film-making, together with passionate testimony from people on one side of a fence that often aren't covered in the mainstream press, this is one of the better documentaries of the decade. I was a convert by the time I walked out of this film.
Kirby Dick's ("Twist of Faith", "This Film Is Not Yet Rated") new
exposé is as revolting as it is provocative. Featuring interviews with
journalists, activists, media personalities and the film subjects
themselves, Kirby exposes all the hypocrisy behind closeted elected
officials (Larry Craig, Ed Schrock, Jim McCrery, David Dreier and
Charlie Crist, among others) who lied their way into high office,
claiming to be morally conservative family men while living a double
Naturally, the issue of "outing" these men is morally questionable but as Massachusetts Representative Barney Frank (a former closeted official himself) says, "There's a right to privacy, not to hypocrisy". And hypocrisy is all there is, since once these men are in power, they shockingly, without exception, work against any and every gay right. Theories are discussed about what causes closeted gay men to join those who work against them, joining forces against what would technically be their "community". An interesting analysis goes way back to Roy Cohn and McCarthyism, and to the kid called a "fag" in school that will join the bully to save his own skin. As simplistic as this example sounds, it certainly has a lot of truth in it.
"Outrage" is a terrific documentary because it isn't one sided. It doesn't suggest that every closeted gay person is a hypocrite, and from a predominantly homosexual point of view (documentarians and interviewees), it's acknowledged how difficult the "coming out" process can be and how each person deserves to have their right to privacy respected. However, all citizens also should know what's behind their superiors' speeches, and the fact that these people are working against homosexuals as they lead double lives themselves is repulsing, heartbreaking, and most infuriating. It's one of the most incendiary, straightforward documentaries I've seen in a while, and I hope it gets enough exposure to provoke some serious discussions.
The so-called log cabin Republicans, elected officials or not, tend to put financial and professional reasons above anything else, and since they chose to live a life of lies, they don't care about the rights other people should be allowed to have. I know gay Republicans who will say "Oh, they make such a fuss about gay marriage and such... you can always live with someone, there's no need to have a paper to prove it", etc. Well, personally, I even agree with that in a way, since I don't think I will ever feel the need to legally marry myself (but I'd like to think that, if I change my mind, I will have the right to do it). But what about the concept of equality? Just because you don't care about it, don't you think John and Stuart should have the right to get married if they want to? I can be accused of being biased myself as I say this, that I'm generalizing all gay Republicans by saying this... which is true. But I firmly believe that what they tend to do is put anything that will benefit them professionally or financially above anything else, including the fight for equal rights and the respect for others. In doing that, they lose their own dignity, and if you support just one of these hypocritical officials, you're one of them.
This is a never-ending discussion, but an important one. It's a question of moral integrity to really know those who are being elected so we can actually claim for our rights whether you are gay, straight, bisexual, pansexual, asexual, black, white, yellow or blue. 10/10.
The big question whether or not it serves the cause to out those
closeted politicians. That is a question that is outside of this
The big question here is whether or not the makers of this film did a good job of covering the issue. Expectations were high on my part as Kirby Dick did the outstanding "This Film Is Not Yet Rated." I was captivated throughout by the stories and those who told of their experiences with the individuals covered. I really thought my own Charlie Crist would just have insinuations, but I am convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that Florida will have her first gay Senator.
The fact shown that the Republican Party used the marriage issue to get votes was repugnant. But, these people will stop at nothing to gain and maintain power. They truly have no shame.
An indictment of closeted politicians who lobby for anti-gay
legislation in the United States.
I found something missing here, though I am not sure what. I feel like there was some muckraking going on, but the film never completely raked the muck -- there was still something more they could have done. For one thing, they never really touched the religion connection -- perhaps a gay man is in the closet to try to appease what he sees as God's wishes?
Most interesting is viewing the 2009 film from a 2013 vantage point. Here we have the Republicans pushing for a same-sex marriage ban through a federal amendment. Four years later, we have same-sex marriage spreading to more states and even Rush Limbaugh saying the conservatives have lost the issue. What was seemingly impossible a decade ago is almost common sense now. And what this film shows is a step in that path we have taken as a country.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Until seeing this I hadn't realized there were so many closeted gays
battling gay-rights legislation.
The filmmaker does a great job using documentary footage of these men -- no female hypocrites are targeted -- arguing vociferously against gay adoption, gay marriage, and other laws aimed at giving homosexuals equal opportunities.
Some of the evidence is stunning; there are phone tapes of politicians soliciting sex and on-the-record interviews with men who have been propositioned. And while I dislike Barney Frank's personality and politics, I came away from this film with admiration for his courage in walking the walk.
There was a weak link in this otherwise above-board film. A reporter discusses having been propositioned by a Fox news anchorman. Yet the reporter, who seems flattered while relating his tale, coyly remains mum on whether he visited the guy's apartment.
This film makes the excellent point that if everyone came out to their families, the whole gay-rights movement would become moot.
It's difficult to get a handle on just what "Outrage" wants its
audience to be outraged about. Ostensibly, it's the hypocrisy of
closeted gay elected officials who support anti-gay legislation (or, at
least, vote against pro-gay legislation). Yet the film spends
considerable time on Jim McGreevey, the former New Jersey Governor, who
was progressive on gay rights issues even while in the closet. And it
features commentary from several conservative gays with groups like the
Log Cabin Republicans -- people who are not in the closet, yet still
support many of the politicians whose voting records the film condemns.
Even Mary Cheney pops up, another out lesbian working for the
Republican establishment the film takes great pains to portray as
virulently anti- gay. Despite all this, the film sidesteps any
examination of why someone might be gay and conservative other than the
tyranny of the closet, for reasons that escape me. Their presence
undercuts the film's basic premise, yet the filmmaker does nothing in
the way of offering counter-arguments. Go figure.
The end result is a muddle, neither as thoughtful or penetrating an examination of the closet as it might have been, nor as trenchant or consistent an expose as director Kirby Dick's last film, "This Film Is Not Yet Rated" (about the MPAA Ratings Board hypocrisy). Dick is a skillful enough filmmaker to put together the material he has in a way that held my interest, but it doesn't add up to much and doesn't contribute much to the "outing" debate that, frankly, peaked about 20 years ago. It also doesn't help that the film spends so much time on Charlie Crist, whose political fortunes seemed much brighter when the movie was made than they do now that he has lost his run for the U.S. Senate. That just adds to the feeling that this film is plowing over well-trodden ground that not many care much about anymore, which is probably why the film didn't get very much attention (at least, not compared to "This Film Is Not Yet Rated").
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