Monday, December 19, 2005

Thoughts on Brokeback

In short, I liked the movie.

But in long (warning: I might mention parts that can be deemed 'spoilers')...

I don't see what the big deal everyone is making.  I've read many reviews of this movie from bloggers (both gay and straight), critics, bloggers who think they're movie critics, etc, and most of their reactions were not only that it was a good movie, but a great movie.

And then it dawned on me why.  It was because of my personal experience, and lack thereof.

Firstly, gay subject matter in the movie wasn't a big shock to me; like it was to the women in the audience.  Some of them 'eww'ed (quite audibly) the first time they kissed and it took all my power not to stand up and scream 'Grow the fuck up.  You're seeing the gay cowboy movie, what the hell did you expect?', but I didn't, because I'm a big boy now.  Then again, I've probably definitely watched more gay porn than most of those women.

I realized I was using gay porn as the basis for my comparison, not just because it was my fantasy to see Ennis and Jack get on all freaky hardcore (which Ang Lee miserably failed at doing), but because I'm a horndog.  But really it's because I haven't watched many other gay romance movies; is that why Brokeback Mountain is 'groundbreaking'?  Because it's made for mainstream?

Secondly, I haven't been in a relationship with another guy that was forbidden, and on that level, I didn't relate.  I guess that's one of the benefits of living in New York City.  Though I still don't know why the biggest liberal city in the world isn't on the forefront of gay rights and marriage.. don't get me started!

In the genre of forbidden love stories, I conjure into my mind Romeo and Juliet, but as a movie it wasn't as great as the epic, Titanic.

The reason why I loved Titanic was because of the great character development of the two characters, Jack and Rose, and I fell in love with both characters and how both characters fell in love with each other.  I didn't feel the same way with Brokeback Mountain; I wasn't convinced that there was a strong connection between Jack and Ennis (similiar to something I felt in Titanic).  Ennis was the silent, stoic type whereas Jack was more vocal about his feelings - this made it seem like a one-sided relationship and less believeable as a love story.

Their relationship was forbidden, and that in itself makes it a good basis for a tear-jerker; I got misty-eyed when Ennis learned what happened to Jack.  But are tears the main criteria for a 'great movie'?  I get the feeling some people (esp. gay bloggers) think so.  This was a good movie, but I wouldn't call it great.  But then again, I was comparing it to gay porn.  I think I'll go see it again, and probably get the DVD, if not to pick up some of the other themes and nuances, then to freeze-frame all three times they get naked.

Now you know what I think, am I going about this movie the wrong way?


Jess said...

Of course, you think Titanic was a great movie, so where does that leave us? :P


Matt C. said...

Titanic had characters?

Deviant said...

Don't blame this on gay porn! I've watched way more gay porn than anyone else, and I thought the movie was excellent!

I can understand the love of Titanic and gay porn, Titanic--after all--was 3-something hours of James Cameron masturbating on screen.

gurustu said...

I also related BM to Romeo and Juliet... great minds, eh?

Actually I think there was a lot more chemistry between that big ape and the blond, than between these two cowboys. Maybe it would've been better if the cowboys went to Skull Island instead.

Kevin said...

I enjoyed the movie, too. I agree with ya: I wasn't overly impressed, but not disappointed either. Porn ruins everything, haha.

Jon said...

You liked Titanic??!! Damn, I need some of what you're smoking :-P

Haven't seen Bareback Mtn yet, will try and get around to it