“Gay movies all suck!”
As a critic who regularly reviews movies of gay interest, I hear this a lot. And while it’s undoubtedly true that there are gay movies that do suck, I’m not sure they suck at any higher rates than other genres. Do micro-budgeted gay indie movies tend to suck more? Not any more than all micro-budgeted indie movies, I’d argue. Most of us just don’t watch that many micro-budgeted movies.
And even if some gay movies do suck, there are indisputably plenty of others that don’t. In fact, when I sat down to make this annual list, I was surprised by how quickly I came up with a number of truly outstanding films. And what do you know? They all veered between “micro-budget” and “low-budget,” with a smattering of “high-enough-budget-to-at-least-pay-a-caterer” (and there’s also one studio movie).
All in all, it wasn’t a bad year for gay film — except when you consider there was only one studio film on my list, and it was far and away the least overtly “gay.”
A note of explanation: technically, some of these films were “released” before 2010, sometimes at film festivals or in a very limited theatrical run. Meanwhile, some of these movies didn’t get theatrical releases at all. The point is, would these films all meet the qualifications for Oscar nominations? Maybe not, but I’m including them in my 2010 list anyway, because this is the year they came into prominence to me and most GLBT audiences, whether through a theatrical release or a DVD one.
And so, without further ado, fire up your Netflix queue, because here are my picks for the eight best gay-themed filmed of 2010! (And yes, they’re in order, counting down to my very favorite.)
Leslie Jordan in My Trip Down the Pink Carpet
9. My Trip Down the Pink Carpet: When you meet someone who is totally comfortable in their skin, completely at peace with who they are, it’s tempting to think, “Oh, it must be so easy for them.” But this film of the one-man stage show of out actor Leslie Jordan shows that, at least for him, self-acceptance was a cold hard slog. On TV appearances like Will & Grace, Jordan comes across as something of a mischievous imp. In this movie, he comes across that way too — while also being bitter, foul-mouthed, bitchy, air head-y, dishy, raunchy, angry, and — guess what? — ultimately, very thoughtful. The movie is very bare bones, but this is still a trip worth taking.
Next Page! A low budget musical and, um, hot boys in their undies!