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Many Straight Guys Say 'No Thanks' to 'Brokeback Mountain'
Newhouse News ^ | 1/5/2005 | Dru Sefton

Posted on 01/05/2006 4:21:21 PM PST by Incorrigible

Many Straight Guys Say 'No Thanks' to 'Brokeback Mountain'

BY DRU SEFTON

It's true, the movie "Brokeback Mountain" does provoke what one researcher calls "a very strong ick factor" in some straight men.

What is it in this story of two cowboy pals in 1960s Wyoming who find themselves in lifelong love -- yet go on to marry women -- that elicits this response from heterosexual males?

The answers are as complex as the plot.

A psychologist who coined the word "homophobic" said the revulsion is precisely that. A scientist who discovered genetic links to sexuality said he simply does not understand the response. The author of "The Sexual Brain" said there is nothing on a neurobiological basis to explain the aversion.

To film fan Eddie Hargreaves of Stockton, Calif., it's more like the "ick" of romantic drama. "I'm not going to speak for everybody," he said, "but I don't know a lot of straight guys who said, `Oh, man, I can't wait to see "Bridges of Madison County,""' 1995's famous tearjerker.

"Brokeback Mountain," directed by Oscar winner Ang Lee and starring box-office hunks Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, is sparking both critical praise and water cooler chatter. It's been nominated for seven Golden Globe awards.

But when movie critic Dave White, who is gay, wrote a humorous piece titled "The Straight Dude's Guide to `Brokeback,"' "I got hundreds of messages, most of whom hated me for just existing," he said.

An excerpt from the column: "The good news -- there's less than one minute of making out. It's about 130 minutes long and 129 of them are about Men Not Having Sex."

We're not talking here about rejections of homosexuality based on moral or religious grounds, though the film has provoked its share of those. It's that some men who pointedly won't see "Brokeback" are social liberals who generally find no fault with people being gay.

"I didn't write the piece with the homophobe in mind," said White, a Movie.com reviewer in Los Angeles who wrote the column for MSNBC.com. "I wrote it for the liberal guy who just can't see this movie, because they know that reads as socially uncool."

White's theory on straight-male queasiness centers on self-identification. "These characters are too close to being regular guys," he said. "That's part of the freakout."

Timothy Shary also noticed that. He's director of the Screen Studies Program at Clark University in Worcester, Mass., and examines masculinity in movies.

"This is a threat to most men because it opens up the possibility that two men who are friendly may become affectionate," Shary said. "That's something men just do not want to consider."

Countless movies feature characters who marry (or are married to) someone but linger evermore over feelings for another -- think "Casablanca."

"But this is about two men who are attracted to each other and keep that connection. That's especially troubling for some men," Shary said, adding, "but that's what makes this a truly revolutionary film."

George Weinberg said this aversion is "definitely homophobia." He is the New York City psychologist and researcher who invented that term in the 1960s, and broke ground with his 1972 book, "Society and the Healthy Homosexual."

"This is the idea of one man's adoration for another," Weinberg said. "A love affair more deep and lasting and romantic" than with their wives.

His advice for straights uneasy about "Brokeback" is to "first understand you have this problem. At least by acknowledging it, that's a start. It's like saying, `I have a fear of heights."'

Research into a physical source of these feelings is lacking.

"It does seem to be almost culturally universal that heterosexual men can have a deep repulsion to overt homosexuality," said Dean Hamer, scientist and author of "The Science of Desire: The Gay Gene and the Biology of Behavior."

"But there is no study I know of to ascertain whether this is a biologically based trait," Hamer said.

Simon LeVay agreed. He is a lecturer on neuroscience and author of "The Sexual Brain," a biological overview of sexuality.

"From a neurobiological basis, I just don't think this response has been researched at that level," LeVay said, "although it's something that should be."

Movie buff Hargreaves, who is straight and married, still isn't going to see "Brokeback Mountain." Not that there's anything wrong with that.

"To say that straight guys are missing out because they're unjustly turned off by the plot, well, there wasn't anything to turn them on in the first place," Hargreaves said. "At least `The English Patient' had a plane crash."

Jan. 5, 2006

(Dru Sefton can be contacted at dru.sefton@newhouse.com)

Not for commercial use.  For educational and discussion purposes only.


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: baaarrrffff; backasswards; barebackmountain; buttduckers; deviantlifestyle; deviants; eeeyyuuuckkkk; filmactorsguild; hollyweird; homosexualagenda; ick; mudpackers; nothanks; perverts; pudding; queers; recidivism; rumprangers; sick; sicksick; sicksicksick; sodomites; turdburlgars; yuk
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Ay Carumba!

Do these shrinks ever stop gazing at their.... navel?

1 posted on 01/05/2006 4:21:24 PM PST by Incorrigible
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To: Incorrigible

It's a chick flick but with naked men and no women...why do you suppose I'd want to skip that? sheesh...


2 posted on 01/05/2006 4:22:42 PM PST by gondramB (Democracy: two wolves and a lamb voting on lunch. Liberty: a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.)
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To: Incorrigible

First to introduce the word 'sodomite' to this thread, but I'm sure I won't be the last.


3 posted on 01/05/2006 4:24:39 PM PST by atomicpossum (If I don't reply, don't think you're winning. I often just don't bother to argue.)
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To: Incorrigible

bareback mountin' :D sorry had to...


4 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:07 PM PST by Echo Talon
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To: Incorrigible

Defining deviancy down. What's next, re-education camps?


5 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:14 PM PST by Brett66 (Where government advances and it advances relentlessly freedom is imperiled -Janice Rogers Brown)
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To: gondramB

The only way you can ever get guys to see this kind of film is to fool them. The Crying Game would never have sold tickets were it not for the "surprise."


6 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:16 PM PST by KingofZion
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To: gondramB

If it is a cowboy show, I want guns!! And I don't mean biceps.


7 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:23 PM PST by swatter
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To: Incorrigible
All this bewilderment as to why heterosexual men are turned off by homosexuality. Sometimes there's an easy answer. Could it be that most of them don't like hairy backsides?
8 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:38 PM PST by luvbach1 (Near the belly of the beast in San Diego)
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To: Incorrigible

I doubt if any straight women are interested in seeing this movie either.


9 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:53 PM PST by BenLurkin (O beautiful for patriot dream - that sees beyond the years)
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To: atomicpossum

Ah, but I got to laugh first at the "healty homo" bit.


10 posted on 01/05/2006 4:25:54 PM PST by GladesGuru (In a society predicated upon Liberty, it is essential to examine principle)
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To: Incorrigible
They've got to stop calling these homos cowboys! They have sheep, not cows. And we don't want to have anything to do with that!
11 posted on 01/05/2006 4:26:08 PM PST by ClearCase_guy
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To: GladesGuru

Oops! Healthy - not healty. Sorry.


12 posted on 01/05/2006 4:26:31 PM PST by GladesGuru (In a society predicated upon Liberty, it is essential to examine principle)
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To: Incorrigible

I'm so tired of being called a homophobe just because I think their lifestyle is deviant and I don't want it in my face. Why aren't those little tutu-wearing fairies called heterophobes?


13 posted on 01/05/2006 4:27:00 PM PST by derllak
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To: Incorrigible

No thanks to Brokeback Mountain.


14 posted on 01/05/2006 4:27:07 PM PST by numberonepal (Don't Even Think About Treading On Me)
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To: Incorrigible
Homosexuality is no longer a disorder but homophobia now is.

Check.

15 posted on 01/05/2006 4:27:34 PM PST by Semper Paratus
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To: Heyworth; Echo Talon

Pinging Heyworth
lol


16 posted on 01/05/2006 4:27:48 PM PST by Tx Angel
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To: Incorrigible
What is it in this story of two cowboy pals in 1960s Wyoming

They are not cowboys.

They are sheepherders.

Guys that start out spending a little too much time around sheep are halfway there.

So9

17 posted on 01/05/2006 4:28:17 PM PST by Servant of the 9 (Trust Me)
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To: gondramB

Sorry, but "chicks" don't want to see two cowpokes doing the nasty. At least, "chicks" over the age of 15.

But if they had made this movie about two lesbo cowgirls the theaters would be sold out. Right guys?


18 posted on 01/05/2006 4:28:33 PM PST by silverleaf (Fasten your seat belts- it's going to be a BUMPY ride.)
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To: luvbach1

Most of em don't like moustaches on their women either! :)


19 posted on 01/05/2006 4:28:37 PM PST by derllak
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To: gondramB
Y'all have gotta read the Dave White piece.

It's VERY, VERY funny.

(But I still have no interest in seeing the movie.)

20 posted on 01/05/2006 4:28:41 PM PST by George Smiley (This tagline deliberately targeted journalists.)
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To: Incorrigible

21 posted on 01/05/2006 4:28:47 PM PST by atomicpossum (If I don't reply, don't think you're winning. I often just don't bother to argue.)
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To: Incorrigible
Many Straight Guys Say 'No Thanks' to 'Brokeback Mountain'

Well, this straight guy just says "No!" (I won't say "Thanks.")

22 posted on 01/05/2006 4:29:01 PM PST by Logophile
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To: Incorrigible

So those that have no interest in seeing a movie are homophobic? That has to be the longest conclusion jump in decades. I guess all those years in school should have been spend on studying instead of training for the long distance conclusion jumping team. Not liking or excepting something gay is a far cry from being phobic about it.


23 posted on 01/05/2006 4:29:18 PM PST by Dutch Boy
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To: Incorrigible
"I got hundreds of messages, most of whom hated me for just existing,"

How many were fathers with sons, I wonder? Years ago any preaching advancing a homosexual agenda would have resulted in a much more personal (and painful) message.

24 posted on 01/05/2006 4:29:26 PM PST by ncountylee (Dead terrorists smell like victory)
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To: silverleaf
Sorry, but "chicks" don't want to see two cowpokes doing the nasty.

Sheeppokes.

25 posted on 01/05/2006 4:29:44 PM PST by atomicpossum (If I don't reply, don't think you're winning. I often just don't bother to argue.)
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To: Incorrigible
What is it in this story of two cowboy pals in 1960s Wyoming who find themselves in lifelong love -- yet go on to marry women -- that elicits this response from heterosexual males?

The answers are as complex as the plot.

Setting aside the whole "abomination to God" thing for a second, the reason that hetro men don't want to see this crap is that it sickens them. Why? Becasuse sex is like food. Someone may choose to eat live worms from a bowl, but it makes me want to puke if I have to watch them eat it.

Its really that simple.

26 posted on 01/05/2006 4:29:54 PM PST by SampleMan
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To: Incorrigible; Heyworth
****back mountain ping.

:)

27 posted on 01/05/2006 4:29:54 PM PST by M203M4
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To: Incorrigible
In a booming economy, Hollywood manages to have declining sales. No mean accomplishment, that ...

As Rushbo said, obviously what Hollywood needs to do, is to just make more movies with lesbian and gay themes (sarcasm was on ... )

28 posted on 01/05/2006 4:30:24 PM PST by Babu
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To: Incorrigible
"This is a threat to most men because it opens up the possibility that two men who are friendly may become affectionate," Shary said. "That's something men just do not want to consider." Countless movies feature characters who marry (or are married to) someone but linger evermore over feelings for another -- think "Casablanca."

Um, Mr. Shary, are you aware that "Casablanca" was about a woman torn between her love for two men, one her husband, the other her former lover? There's no way to analogize that scenario to two homosexuals.

29 posted on 01/05/2006 4:30:40 PM PST by steelcurtain
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To: Incorrigible
To film fan Eddie Hargreaves of Stockton, Calif., it's more like the "ick" of romantic drama. "I'm not going to speak for everybody," he said, "but I don't know a lot of straight guys who said, `Oh, man, I can't wait to see "Bridges of Madison County,""' 1995's famous tearjerker.

That's Barbra Streisand! Many normal guys can enjoy Bridges just as they can enjoy Saving Private Ryan.

The "ick" factor comes from the fact that it's two guys "in love".Normal guys have as little desire to watch two guys in "love" as they do to watch two dogs in love.

It's a normal reaction for normal guys.

30 posted on 01/05/2006 4:30:45 PM PST by Gay State Conservative
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To: Incorrigible
In all of the psychobabble, not a word about right and wrong -- just about "biological basis", with feeling good as their highest ideal.
31 posted on 01/05/2006 4:30:53 PM PST by SteveMcKing ("No empire collapses because of technical reasons. They collapse because they are unnatural.")
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To: Incorrigible

I would see it. I'm not sure how much I'd charge to induce me to see it. But there is an amount of money you could pay me that would get me to go see it. I can tell you one thing: not cheap.


32 posted on 01/05/2006 4:30:55 PM PST by samtheman
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To: Incorrigible

"Homophobe" means a fear of them.

I don't fear them at all; I just don't like them.

What is it about a man's butt that turns homos on? Is it the aroma?

I'll never see this movie, and will look askance at any man who does.


33 posted on 01/05/2006 4:30:55 PM PST by MonroeDNA (Look for the union label--on the bat crashing through your windshield!)
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To: Incorrigible
His advice for straights uneasy about "Brokeback" is to "first understand you have this problem. At least by acknowledging it, that's a start. It's like saying, `I have a fear of heights."'

So the good doctor is saying that fearing homosexuality is just as healthy as fearing dangerous, precarious heights? OK, I'll buy that.

34 posted on 01/05/2006 4:31:00 PM PST by randog (What the....?!)
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To: Incorrigible

Of course if a person fails to see it the critics will call "us" homophobic.

Hey bonehead critics - A romantic movie between to sheepherders in love is just not what I'm looking to spend my money on. That does not make me homophobic.

Since I didn't go to the movies and see the other 95% of the trash that was put out this year it would be hard to total in the "phobic" list. Monkey-phobic, remake phobic, vacation movie phobic, etc, etc.

Trash is Trash.


35 posted on 01/05/2006 4:31:04 PM PST by PeteB570 (Guns, what real men want for Christmas)
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To: Semper Paratus
Homosexuality is no longer a disorder but homophobia now is.

Roger that, but I prefer to be called rainbow challenged.

36 posted on 01/05/2006 4:31:22 PM PST by numberonepal (Don't Even Think About Treading On Me)
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To: swatter
"If it is a cowboy show, I want guns!! And I don't mean biceps."

The last blind date I ever went on was to see Clint Eastwood in the Bridges of Madison County.... the girl had read the book. About half way through I leaned over and asked where Clint was keeping his guns. "What?" she said.

I explained that we had seen him take a shower and seen the inside of his truck and I couldn't figure out where his guns were "for when the killin' starts."

In retrospect I should have noticed that she had been sobbing quietly over the great "passion" of the movie as he took photographs of bridges.... there never was a second date.
37 posted on 01/05/2006 4:32:04 PM PST by gondramB (Democracy: two wolves and a lamb voting on lunch. Liberty: a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.)
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To: derllak
I'm so tired of being called a homophobe just because I think their lifestyle is deviant and I don't want it in my face. Why aren't those little tutu-wearing fairies called heterophobes?

As I like to tell people when accused of being "homophobic". A phobia is a fear. I'm not scared, I'm disgusted. There is a difference.

38 posted on 01/05/2006 4:32:11 PM PST by SampleMan
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To: silverleaf
But if they had made this movie about two lesbo cowgirls the theaters would be sold out. Right guys?

It depends on whether or not they're hot.

39 posted on 01/05/2006 4:32:36 PM PST by numberonepal (Don't Even Think About Treading On Me)
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To: Incorrigible

I'll stick with Shane, where the hero was attracted to the sodbuster's wife not the sodbuster, thanks.


40 posted on 01/05/2006 4:33:16 PM PST by Joe Miner
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To: Brett66
re-education camps?

Are you not aware of the public school systems. Mark my words, they'll be doing kindergarten field trips to this movie.

41 posted on 01/05/2006 4:33:35 PM PST by SampleMan
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To: Incorrigible
"It does seem to be almost culturally universal that heterosexual men can have a deep repulsion to overt homosexuality," said Dean Hamer, scientist and author of "The Science of Desire: The Gay Gene and the Biology of Behavior."

"But there is no study I know of to ascertain whether this is a biologically based trait," Hamer said.

Words fail.

42 posted on 01/05/2006 4:33:35 PM PST by 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten (Is your problem ignorance or apathy? I don't know and I don't care.)
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To: silverleaf

Actually the Atlanta paper and many others have labeld Brokeback as a major chick flick.


http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=brokeback+%22chick+flick%22&btnG=Search


43 posted on 01/05/2006 4:34:03 PM PST by gondramB (Democracy: two wolves and a lamb voting on lunch. Liberty: a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.)
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To: Incorrigible
A psychologist who coined the word "homophobic" said the revulsion is precisely that.

Bah. I'm repulsed by pedophiles, too. I guess that makes me "pedophili-phobic" in the eyes of that moron.

44 posted on 01/05/2006 4:34:18 PM PST by Prime Choice (We are RepubliCANs, not RepubliCAN'Ts.)
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To: derllak
Why aren't those little tutu-wearing fairies called heterophobes?

Because, as civilized people, we use the proper term, pillow-biters.

45 posted on 01/05/2006 4:34:42 PM PST by Richard Kimball (How bout them Longhorns?)
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To: Incorrigible
sparking both critical praise and water cooler chatter.

"Water cooler chatter" implies that people with jobs have seen this film in significant numbers. We know this to be false.

My water coooler has never heard of Brokeback Mountain. Chances are strong yours hasn't, either.

46 posted on 01/05/2006 4:34:44 PM PST by WhistlingPastTheGraveyard
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To: GladesGuru

To these scum, "Healthy" means: "In political agreement with everything I say."


47 posted on 01/05/2006 4:34:49 PM PST by SteveMcKing ("No empire collapses because of technical reasons. They collapse because they are unnatural.")
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To: Incorrigible

Please do not refer to me as a straight man. I am a man period and most assuredly not a deviate.


48 posted on 01/05/2006 4:35:00 PM PST by Rock N Jones
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To: SampleMan

Exactly! You hit it right on the head!


49 posted on 01/05/2006 4:35:08 PM PST by derllak
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Comment #50 Removed by Moderator


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