In 1984, British journalist Arthur Stuart investigates the career of 1970s glam superstar Brian Slade, who was heavily influenced in his early years by hard-living and rebellious American singer Curt Wild.
Jonathan Rhys Meyers,
Another dazzling suburban phantasm from writer-director Todd Haynes, Dottie Gets Spanked (made post-Poison and pre-Safe) is a stylized, bittersweet nod to his childhood fascination with I ... See full summary »
J. Evan Bonifant,
The true story of gay lovers, Richard Loeb and Nathan Leopold Jr. who kidnapped and murdered a child in the early 1920s for kicks. The plot covers the months before the crime, the ... See full summary »
Marlon Riggs, with assistance from other gay Black men, especially poet Essex Hemphill, celebrates Black men loving Black men as a revolutionary act. The film intercuts footage of Hemphill ... See full summary »
Three intercut stories about outsiders, sex and violence. In "Hero," Richie, at age 7, kills his father and flies away. After the event, a documentary in cheesy lurid colors asks what Richie was like and what led up to the shooting. In the black and white "Horror," a scientist isolates the elixir of human sexuality, drinks it, and becomes a festering, contagious murderer; a female colleague who loves him tries to help, to her peril. In "Homo," a prisoner in Fontenal prison is drawn to an inmate whom he knew some years before, at Baton juvenile institute, and whose humiliations he witnessed. This story is told in dim light, except for the bright flashbacks.Written by
After reading a bit about Todd Haynes' "Poison" and the homosexual comparisons that people seem to only be drawing from it, I've come to the conclusion that it doesn't deserve to just be tagged as a seminal film of the "new queer cinema". It's so much more than that.
First of all, I found "Homo" to be the least intriguing of the 3 stories. "Hero" is actually more disturbing, showing the sudden disappearance of a mentally-inflicted, patricidal child who, according to his mother, was sent from the angels. I was particularly impressed by Haynes' creative use of layering in the adultery and spanking scenes.
But, in blending three prominent aspects (color, black and white, documentary) of the film medium into his film, the beautiful b&w "Horror" is the most notable, showing the sudden downfall of a scientist's prosperity. Haynes conveys the scientist's hysteria to his audience by using slanted, extreme close-up camera techniques and spastic editing, not to mention a haunting soundtrack.
The film is a bizarre one, indeed... but undeniably artful, and it certainly doesn't deserve to simply be pigeonholed into nothing more than a cornerstone for homosexual cinema.
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