Will Smith Goes from Genie to Uncle Remus in Aladdin
May his daring at least get Disney’s closed minds to rerelease Song of the...
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Don’t Ask, Do Tell13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi13 Hours13HoursReflections in a Golden EyeThe OfficeTropicThunderArmond WhiteMoviesmilitary “I love a man in a uniform,” sang the post-punk British band Gang of Four. That highly danceable tune about political and romantic indoctrination could as well be the theme song of the new Michael Bay movie 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi. It’s the secret in the subtitle that intrigues. 13 Hours pays homage to the team of elite contractors—former Navy SEALS—who defended the U.S. Embassy and a nearby CIA annex on September 11, 2012. Four Americans died in that tragedy, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, but the film doesn’t specifically detail that (or the political controversy surrounding the...
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1917: War as Video Game and Ceremony
Disdain, contrivance, and irony produce fake...
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3 Generations Explores a Family’s Sexual Awareness About Ray3 GenerationsTammyGrandma20thCentury WomenArmond WhiteMoviestrans Tastemakers at the 2015 Toronto Film Festival made producer Harvey Weinstein rethink how to sell About Ray, the transgender movie starring Naomi Watts, Susan Sarandon and Elle Fanning.  Now the film is out in the culture, finally opening with a new, transitioned name: 3 Generations. The movie makes better sense after this reassignment. Although 3 Generations begins with Fanning’s character confiding, “All I ever wanted was to be a boy,” the film expands to consider the impact that disclosure has on an already troubled New York family: single mother Maggie (Watts), lesbian grandmother Dolly (Sarandon) and her partner Frances (Linda Emond). Fanning’s Ray...
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Inside Marriage Inequality: Andrew Haigh’s 45 Years45 YearsWeekendLookingStaircaseThe DresserLife During WartimeLooking's45 Years'Armond WhiteMovies What does a movie about an elderly straight couple nearing its 50th anniversary have to do with gay life? In the year of the Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges ruling that made gay marriage the law of the land, gay director Andrew Haigh’s 45 Years puts a panicky response on the screen. The shaky, precarious marriage of Geoff and Kate Mercer (Tom Courtney and Charlotte Rampling), in the Norfollk, England, presents the long-standing heterosexual ideal of matrimonial commitment. This retired couple illustrates the social institution of which gay Americans now partake—that Obergefell v. Hodges suggests defines the gay desire for social equality. RELATED | Charlotte...
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The Age of Effing Consent52 TuesdaysMarfa GirlThe FuryOne DayKidsThe Last Picture ShowArmond WhiteMoviestrans Sexual confusion is rampant in two new features: The Australian 52 Tuesdays about a girl, 16-year-old Billie (Tilda Cobham-Hervey), responding to her mother Jane’s (Del Herbert-Jane) transition into Jim and the American film Marfa Girl about the sexual awakening of teenage boys in a Texas border town. Keeping pace with our era’s ongoing moral revolution, these films mix social change with sexual awareness. Director Sophie Hyde does this literally when she interweaves brief images of news events in between Billie and Jim’s year of domestic conflicts. Mother-daughter empathy is apparent when they both get butch haircuts. Jim’s hormone trials parallel Billie’s experimentation...
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Christian Faith Is the Missing Ingredient in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Tom Hanks delivers his latest paean to secular...
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Santa Tilda, Our Lady of TransgressionA Bigger SplashOrlandoA Bigger Splash 2.0L'AvventuraThe ServantKnife in the WaterLa PiscineBy the SeaWe Need to Talk About KevinthinkI Am LoveBigger SplashPortrait in BlackMidnight LaceArmond WhiteMoviestilda swinton Tilda Swinton and her comrade, Italian filmmaker Luca Guadagnino, borrow the title of their new film. A Bigger Splash, from a notable work of gay cinema, Jack Hazan’s 1973 A Bigger Splash, a documentary that revealed the inspirations of gay British artist David Hockney. It’s so like Swinton to extend the legend of Hazan’s now little-known film into a new century. She’s England’s leading avant-pop muse and candidate for the next “Friend of Dorothy” soubriquet, earned from her commitment to such gay filmmakers as John...
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A Hidden Life Suffers from Hollywood’s Moral Crisis
Political persecution stretched to epic...
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Return of the Angry Young Gay ManSundayBloodySundayMidnightCowboyA Kind of LovingCourtesy Rialto Pictures/StudiocanalVictimThe Marrying KindA Kind of Loving—Armond WhiteMovies Before John Schlesinger’s classics Sunday, Bloody Sunday and Midnight Cowboy became known as gay films, he was celebrated for “sophistication”—a euphemism for sexual candor-plus-caution. This was at a time filmmakers were challenging industry censorship while a new generation of young, brazenly sexual English actors rode the wave of pop culture’s legendary British Invasion.  Hindsight makes Schlesinger’s discretion remarkable—especially inA Kind of Loving (1962) which plays this week as the finale of Film Forum’s retro series “The Brit New...
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