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Gay viewers' take on "Brokeback": It's really just a simple love story
Seattle Times ^ | Friday, December 23, 2005 | Jose Antonio Vargas

Posted on 12/23/2005 5:39:51 PM PST by presidio9

When word got around among gay people that Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger, hunky Hollywood hotties du jour, were set to play ranch hands who fall in love in the idyllic mountains of Wyoming, there was a certain giddiness: Tight Levi's galore! The homoerotic Abercrombie & Fitch catalog writ large! A mainstream, romantic, holigay cowboy movie!

Then a herd mentality started to sink in, like a gay church praying at the altar of "Brokeback Mountain." There's a countdown on Gay.com ("It's finally here!"), E-vites are landing in in-boxes ("Let's watch it together!"), and blogs are keeping tabs on the film's awards, including seven Golden Globe nominations — the most of any film this year. The message is: If you're a self-respecting homosexual, you had better see this film, pronto.

Yet what's most surprising about "Brokeback" is that it's not a gay film. Not in the way gay films, especially those about gay men, usually are.

This is not a film about gay men and AIDS, à la "Philadelphia," which won Tom Hanks an Oscar, or "Love! Valour! Compassion!," the film version of the Terrence McNally play. It's neither comedic nor campy, nothing like "In & Out" or "The Birdcage." It's no "Kiss Me, Guido" or "Trick" or "The Broken Hearts Club," all set in big cities, with stereotypical gay characters — a thespian with the perfectly decorated Greenwich Village apartment, a West Hollywood muscle queen hooked on drugs — trapped in flamboyantly worn-out narratives.

Love repressed

Based on a spare short story by the Pulitzer Prize-winning Annie Proulx and directed by Taiwanese American Ang Lee ("Sense and Sensibility," "The Ice Storm," "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon"), it tells the story of Jack Twist (Gyllenhaal) and Ennis Del Mar (Ledger), two vagabonds whose lifelong affair begins in Brokeback Mountain on a chilly night in 1963.

They part ways, marry women who don't know their secret and have children, only to reunite four years later with a deep, fiery, longing kiss that is arguably the most passionate man-on-man kiss to have been put on screen.

"Theirs is a story of a love that was repressed," Lee, who is married and has two kids, says in an interview. "That's really what drew me to the story."

Year after year, spanning two decades, Jack and Ennis reunite at Brokeback Mountain, frustrated, scared, still in love — and giving new meaning to "goin' fishin'," the excuse they tell their wives.

There is one sex scene in the movie, which Lee describes as "animalistic," "spontaneous" and "aggressive"; it stands in stark contrast to the kissing scene, which is meant to be "sexy." If you don't buy that kiss, Lee adds, then you won't buy the love affair.

"It's not about sex"

The film's old-fashioned romanticism wasn't what some early viewers had expected. "It doesn't fit into the current gay culture as we know it. It's not about sex; I was actually surprised that there wasn't that much sex in it," says Jonathan Rosales, 21, a recent graduate of the University of Southern California who saw "Brokeback" in Los Angeles.

Joseph Wiedman, a 31-year-old lawyer who saw the film in San Francisco, adds, "The big thing is: The movie is really well done and really accessible, for gays and straights. It's not preachy, as one of my friends pointed out, and not at all political. It's very personal."

"Brokeback" pushes the boundaries on two fronts: It's a Hollywood romance, but with gay men; it's a gay film, but with broader, more universal themes.

"They can call it whatever they want to call it; just don't call it a 'gay cowboy love story.' That's upsetting to me," says Paul Pecoriano, 35, an actor and waiter in Manhattan.

"It's a love story, period," says Pecoriano.


TOPICS: Society; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: barf; brokeback; hollyweird; homosexualagenda; humpbackmounting; moviereview; notgayenough; pudding
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1 posted on 12/23/2005 5:39:52 PM PST by presidio9
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To: presidio9

Rump Rangers pure and simple


2 posted on 12/23/2005 5:41:16 PM PST by al baby (Father of the beeber)
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To: presidio9
HEATH LECHER . . . . JAKE WILLINGHOLE

BACKDOOR MOUNTIN' II:
HOMO ON THE RANGE

A COUPLE OF COWPOKES

3 posted on 12/23/2005 5:42:13 PM PST by Charles Henrickson (Nominated for the Brokeback Award, for Best Bending Over.)
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To: presidio9

I've never quite seen the hype for a gay movie in my life. Man alive, they want to cram this movie down our throat.


4 posted on 12/23/2005 5:42:54 PM PST by Dog Gone
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To: presidio9

"They can call it whatever they want to call it; just don't call it a 'gay cowboy love story.' That's upsetting to me," says Paul Pecoriano, 35, an actor and waiter in Manhattan.

It's a love story starring two faggots.

Get upset.


5 posted on 12/23/2005 5:43:29 PM PST by nmh (Intelligent people believe in Intelligent Design (God))
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To: presidio9
"They can call it whatever they want to call it; just don't call it a 'gay cowboy love story.' That's upsetting to me," says Paul Pecoriano, 35, an actor and waiter in Manhattan.

Thorry, grrlfriend. It's a 'pervert shepherd story'. Happy?

6 posted on 12/23/2005 5:44:56 PM PST by thoughtomator (Congrats Iraq!)
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To: presidio9
"It's a love story, period," says Pecoriano.

So could a story about a man who loves his Black Lab so much, that he has sex with it. I wouldn't want to see that movie either.

7 posted on 12/23/2005 5:45:02 PM PST by appleharvey
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To: presidio9

Well tie me down and call me Sally, that is one humdinger, I mean hummerwanger, I mean rimreamer of a danglin'wrangler movie.


8 posted on 12/23/2005 5:45:52 PM PST by keithtoo (Leftists/Democrats - Traitors, Haters and Vacillators)
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To: presidio9
The Birdcage was hillarious. One oft-overlooked scene involved Senator Kealy and his wife talking about the whole "cultural attache" thing, wherein Mrs. Kealy disgustedly asks something like

"I mean, 'cultural attache'? Sounds like old money to me."

I thought it was pretty cool how the filmmakers picked up on conservatives' distaste for old-money blue blood (KENNEDY! ROCKEFELLER!) types.

9 posted on 12/23/2005 5:46:07 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: EdReform; little jeremiah; ItsOurTimeNow

ping


10 posted on 12/23/2005 5:46:33 PM PST by presidio9 (Islam Is As Islam Does)
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To: Dog Gone
"Man alive, they want to cram this movie down our throat."

I'm going to drown myself in vodka now to get the image that you just put in my head out of there.

11 posted on 12/23/2005 5:47:00 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: presidio9

Perfect venue for the late Hunter boys - Rock and Tab.


12 posted on 12/23/2005 5:47:42 PM PST by ncountylee (Dead terrorists smell like victory)
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To: presidio9

So how is this movie doing?? (in terms of making money)


13 posted on 12/23/2005 5:48:08 PM PST by escapefromboston (manny ortez: mvp)
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To: presidio9

I swear if I see anything else about this perverted movie I'm gonna hurl.


14 posted on 12/23/2005 5:51:43 PM PST by swmobuffalo (the only good terrorist is a dead one)
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To: Gordongekko909
I'm going to drown myself in vodka now to get the image that you just put in my head out of there.

How about a picture of republican beauty Kathy Ireland.

Feel better now? :)

15 posted on 12/23/2005 5:55:19 PM PST by MotleyGirl70
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To: MotleyGirl70
It's a start...

*Image Googles "Michelle Malkin"*

Ahh, much better. But I'm still getting drunk.

16 posted on 12/23/2005 5:56:47 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: escapefromboston

Of course the press is playing it up like this movie is a blockbuster, because it has done well in limited release. It is open in 69 strategic theaters nationwide (including 4 in heavily gay Greenwich Village) near me. The movie will make money because it is low budget, and it will, of course, win tons of awards, but it is not the cultural phnomenon that the propagandists would have you believe. The re-release in IMAX of Polar Express is in a similiar number of theatres and doing better.


17 posted on 12/23/2005 5:59:36 PM PST by presidio9 (Islam Is As Islam Does)
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To: Gordongekko909
Cheers!
18 posted on 12/23/2005 5:59:43 PM PST by MotleyGirl70
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To: presidio9
It is open in 69 strategic theaters nationwide (including 4 in heavily gay Greenwich Village) near me.

You've got to be kidding.

The re-release in IMAX of Polar Express is in a similiar number of theatres and doing better.

I hope this movie is never shown in an IMAX theater. I really hope it isn't shown in 3D in an IMAX theater.

19 posted on 12/23/2005 6:02:46 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: MotleyGirl70

Yay drunkenness!


20 posted on 12/23/2005 6:03:04 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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Comment #21 Removed by Moderator

To: Dog Gone

They have also been marketing it as family movie (!!!) with a normal hetero couple and a baby on the ad.


22 posted on 12/23/2005 6:06:48 PM PST by indcons (FReepmail indcons to join the MilHist ping list)
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To: Dog Gone

I agree with your sentiments. I honestly don't care if homosexuals have movies that cater to their lifestyle. What I do mind is the absolute lack of objectivity by the media in their reporting about the movie.

By all accounts the movie was a success in its niche market. But the reporting and praise the movie has been given makes it seem as if it was a mainstream success.

One hundred theaters, probably a few million in sales, and probably a million more before it is done, but its limited success cannot be extrapolated to mean that all of America has fallen in love with homosexuality. Or that it has become willing to accept the homosexual agenda. The movie's limited success fails to demonstrate even that not so subtle assertion by the media.

There's also the fact that if every gay man in America went and saw the movie, it should've done a hell of a lot better than it did. Which means that even the gay community didn't universally embrace this movie. And that is far more telling and far more important than the way the media has reported the movie's success.


23 posted on 12/23/2005 6:09:30 PM PST by coconutt2000 (NO MORE PEACE FOR OIL!!! DOWN WITH TYRANTS, TERRORISTS, AND TIMIDCRATS!!!! (3-T's For World Peace))
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To: Baynative

Have no fear. The casting of two "hunky Hollywood hotties du jour" insurese that DVD sales will be just fabulous.


24 posted on 12/23/2005 6:09:52 PM PST by presidio9 (Islam Is As Islam Does)
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To: presidio9

This is the most vomit-inducing "news article" I've ever read. How did you get through the whole thing?


25 posted on 12/23/2005 6:10:26 PM PST by darkangel82
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To: Baynative

hmm that doesn't seem so good (especially considering how much free plublicity it has gotten). Though it only cost 14 million so it will probably make its money back.


26 posted on 12/23/2005 6:10:33 PM PST by escapefromboston (manny ortez: mvp)
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Comment #27 Removed by Moderator

To: coconutt2000
By all accounts the movie was a success in its niche market. But the reporting and praise the movie has been given makes it seem as if it was a mainstream success.

One hundred theaters, probably a few million in sales, and probably a million more before it is done, but its limited success cannot be extrapolated to mean that all of America has fallen in love with homosexuality.

You ain't seen nothing yet. Wait till the month before they hand out the Oscars.

28 posted on 12/23/2005 6:14:21 PM PST by presidio9 (Islam Is As Islam Does)
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To: appleharvey

...story about a man who loves his Black Lab so much, that he has sex with it.

**
Look for that one to be winning all the awards next year. The following year will be the year of the "groundbreaking" necrophiliac movie.


29 posted on 12/23/2005 6:15:11 PM PST by Bigg Red (Do not trust Democrats with national security!)
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To: nmh

Actually neither star is a homosexual. Heath Ledger has a child with his onscreen wife in the movie, Michelle Williams.


30 posted on 12/23/2005 6:18:24 PM PST by Mr. Blonde (You know, Happy Time Harry, just being around you kinda makes me want to die.)
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To: nmh

Actually neither star is a homosexual. Heath Ledger has a child with his onscreen wife in the movie, Michelle Williams.


31 posted on 12/23/2005 6:18:25 PM PST by Mr. Blonde (You know, Happy Time Harry, just being around you kinda makes me want to die.)
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To: presidio9
All people disgusted by this movie should not see it and should boycott all future movies made by these "Hunky Stars".
32 posted on 12/23/2005 6:27:27 PM PST by Supernatural (All the truth in the world adds up to one big lie! bob dylan)
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To: Mr. Blonde
Actually neither star is a homosexual. Heath Ledger has a child with his onscreen wife in the movie, Michelle Williams.

Then again, the characters in the movie have a wife and kids.....hmmmmm.

33 posted on 12/23/2005 6:32:14 PM PST by Always Right
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To: nmh
"They can call it whatever they want to call it; just don't call it a 'gay cowboy love story.' That's upsetting to me," says Paul Pecoriano, 35, an actor and waiter in Manhattan.

It's a love story starring two faggots.

Worse -- it is a love story about 2 sheep herders not cowboys.

Now we know where these deviants turn when the sheep start getting too boring...

34 posted on 12/23/2005 6:34:24 PM PST by freedumb2003 (American troops cannot be defeated. American Politicians can.)
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To: Supernatural

Your going to have a pretty long list of actors to not see if your going to boycott every actor who has played a gay man. I would hate to think I refused to see The Godfather because Al Pacino played a gay man in Dog Day Afternoon. It's a role and nothing more. It certainly doesn't seem to be the actors pushing the movie rather the media.


35 posted on 12/23/2005 6:36:35 PM PST by Mr. Blonde (You know, Happy Time Harry, just being around you kinda makes me want to die.)
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To: Mr. Blonde

The last movie I saw was "We Were Soldiers Once...". The one before that was "Braveheart". Hollywood doesn't get much of my money no matter who is in the movie. They just aren't worth the time, effort and money involved to go to the theater to see the garbage. With only a few exceptions, like Mel Gibson, of course.


36 posted on 12/23/2005 6:39:10 PM PST by Supernatural (All the truth in the world adds up to one big lie! bob dylan)
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To: presidio9

"Homos on the Range" would be a better title. They are still beating this dead sheep, trying to convince normal people that they would enjoy paying $8 to see perverts kissing.


37 posted on 12/23/2005 6:43:52 PM PST by kittymyrib
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To: Mr. Blonde

Quick: What was Al Pacino's last good movie? Scarface?


38 posted on 12/23/2005 6:48:03 PM PST by presidio9 (Islam Is As Islam Does)
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To: ncountylee

***Perfect venue for the late Hunter boys - Rock and Tab.***

Why not make it a threesome with Van Johnson!

Brokeback Mountain, where the sheep are relaxed and the Rams are nervous!


39 posted on 12/23/2005 6:52:34 PM PST by Ruy Dias de Bivar (Know what I want I want an official Red Rider 200 shot carbine action range model air rifle!)
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To: Charles Henrickson

40 posted on 12/23/2005 6:57:12 PM PST by A CA Guy (God Bless America, God bless and keep safe our fighting men and women.)
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To: presidio9

Why publicize this crap?


41 posted on 12/23/2005 7:06:06 PM PST by lancer (If you are not with us, you are against us!)
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To: kittymyrib
"Homos on the Range" would be a better title. They are still beating this dead sheep, trying to convince normal people that they would enjoy paying $8 to see perverts kissing.

It maybe a different movie if there was only kissing but most reviews and articles don't reveal there is explicit anal sex.
pluggedinonline.com

42 posted on 12/23/2005 7:23:29 PM PST by bulldozer
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To: presidio9

I gotta disagree, I saw the trailer for Tristan and Isolde, that is a love story. Brokeback Mountain is exactly what it's intials are, B.M.


43 posted on 12/23/2005 7:55:07 PM PST by chae (R.I.P. Eddie Guerrero He lied, he cheated, he stole my heart)
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To: presidio9

No, he has been in several enjoyable movies since then. But his last film that lives up to his earlier work is Heat. Which is one of my all time faves. He should team up with Michael Mann more often.


44 posted on 12/23/2005 8:33:00 PM PST by Mr. Blonde (You know, Happy Time Harry, just being around you kinda makes me want to die.)
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To: nmh
It's a <->love<-> lust story starring two etcs.

There. Fixed it.

45 posted on 12/23/2005 8:34:50 PM PST by little jeremiah
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To: little jeremiah

Wait, that didn't work.


46 posted on 12/23/2005 8:35:12 PM PST by little jeremiah
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To: kittymyrib
They are still beating this dead sheep, trying to convince normal people that they would enjoy paying $8 to see perverts kissing.

Hmm. My wife and I only paid $7, so I guess we're up a buck.

47 posted on 12/23/2005 8:37:10 PM PST by Wormwood (I! I! Cthulhu fhtagn!)
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To: little jeremiah
Were you shooting for:

It's a love lust story starring two etcs...

?

48 posted on 12/24/2005 10:03:27 AM PST by freedumb2003 (American troops cannot be defeated. American Politicians can.)
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To: All

They should of billed it two men in love with there sheep. Would of made an interesting love seen, they could of show a threeway, LOL.


49 posted on 12/24/2005 10:23:28 AM PST by DurtySanches (With religion anything is possible, with science only the possible is possible.)
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To: presidio9

The movie's great. It's a drama about an aspect of the human experience which is, like it or not, real. Everybody walking out of the theater when I saw it was crying or stunned--old people, young people, straight couples, gay couples. It's about loss and regret and the choices we make which spread ripples of unhappiness through our lives and the lives of people raound us. Has anybody else who has posted on this thread seen it? It's a masterpiece which is going to be seen and talked about, which is going to move people to tears for many many years after we are all gone. I think that I can be a conservative and support small government, a strong defense policy and the power of the free market without losing the ability to be moved by a work of art like Brokeback Mountain. It's also, by the way, going to be a huge hit, way beyond the gay audience. It has already posted the highest per-screen averages of any movie ever, including in places like Plano, Texas. In terms of profitablility--it cost 13 million to make--it will be more successful than King Kong, which cost 207 million. Okay, now you can all shoot me.


50 posted on 12/24/2005 12:41:37 PM PST by Nick5
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