- SKU: 20136794
- Release Date: 06/05/2012
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- Closed Captioned
Nicholas Hytner (The Crucible) directed this Wendy Wasserstein screenplay, adapted from Stephen McCauley's novel, about the romantic mismatch of a gay man and a young pregnant woman. When literary agent Sidney Miller (Alan Alda) and his wife Constance (Allison Janney) have a dinner party, Constance's social-worker stepsister Nina Borowski (Jennifer Aniston) attends without her lawyer boyfriend Vince McBride (John Pankow). Also present are gay schoolteacher George Hanson (Paul Rudd) and his lover, Dr. Robert Joley (Tim Daly). George learns from Nina that he's being dumped by Robert, a scene ensues, and Nina then invites George to stay in the spare room of her Brooklyn apartment. Nina still has sex with boyfriend Vince, but during late-night talks, she begins to bond with her gay roommate. Nina and George take dance lessons at the local senior citizen's community center, and Gershwin's "You Were Meant for Me" sets the tone for romance as the two become soul mates. Unfortunately, shortly after their love blooms, Nina learns she's pregnant by Vince, who is no longer the object of her affections. Instead of telling the unwanted Vince right away, Nina asks George to join her in raising the child. George stays on, but in the months that follow, he also begins to see men again. Robert takes him along to a Connecticut conference where drama critic Rodney Fraser (Nigel Hawthorne) has Paul James (Amo Gulinello) in tow. George and Paul have an instant attraction, and this prompts everyone involved to reassess their emotional commitments. ~ Bhob Stewart, Rovi
The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
The usually menacing British actor Terence Stamp does a complete turnaround as Bernadette, an aging transsexual who tours the backwaters of Australia with her stage partners, Mitzi (Hugo Weaving) and Adam/Felicia (Guy Pearce). Their act, well-known in Sydney, involves wearing lots of makeup and gowns and lip-synching to records, but Bernadette is getting a bit tired of it all and is also haunted by the bizarre death of an old loved one. Nevertheless, when Mitzi and Felicia get an offer to perform in the remote town of Alice Springs at a casino, Bernadette decides to tag along. The threesome ventures into the outback with Priscilla, a lavender-colored school bus that doubles as dressing room and home on the road. Along the way, the act encounters any number of strange characters, as well as incidents of homophobia, while Bernadette becomes increasingly concerned about the path her life has taken. ~ Don Kaye, Rovi
Sean Mathias directed this screen adaptation of Martin Sherman's award-winning play about the persecution of homosexuals by Nazis during World War II. In Germany, the Nazi party's program of genocide against any and all perceived "enemies" is coming into full swing when the party begins a violent purge of homosexuals in its membership. Max (Clive Owen), a bisexual playboy, is attending an orgy thrown by drag queen "Greta" (Mick Jagger) and featuring a number of party members when the festivities are raided by the police; Max and his lover Rudy (Brian Webber) escape, but they are later arrested and sentenced to a concentration camp. En route to the camp, Max betrays Rudy and arranges to be given a yellow identification star, marking him as a Jew, instead of a pink triangle, which would signify him as gay; while the Jews are destined to be executed, gay prisoners receive even more brutal treatment from the guards. While incarcerated, Max meets Horst (Lothaire Bluteau), an inmate who proudly wears the pink triangle. Max and Horst fall in love with each other, and Horst's bravery leads Max to accept his sexual identity. Bent was released in two versions; the original cut was rated NC-17 for a sequence featuring strong sexual content, while a trimmed version was granted an R. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
The Children's Hour
Based on the 1934 play by Lillian Hellman, The Children's Hour is set at an exclusive girl's school managed by best friends Audrey Hepburn and Shirley MacLaine. When student Karen Balkin is punished for one of her many misdeeds, the mean-spirited youngster rushes to her wealthy aunt Fay Bainter, and, randomly choosing a phrase she has undoubtedly read in some magazine, accuses Hepburn and MacLaine of having an "unnatural relationship." As Balkin's lies grow in viciousness, the student's parents withdraw their children from the school. Hepburn and MacLaine sue Bainter for libel, only to lose their case when MacLaine's aunt Miriam Hopkins refuses to testify as a character witness. The trial takes its toll on the relationship between Hepburn and her boyfriend James Garner. When Bainter discovers that her niece has been lying, she tries to make amends, but it is too late. Director William Wyler had also helmed the first film version of Children's Hour, 1936's These Three, which due to censorship restrictions of the time did without the lesbian angle (the little girl's accusations involved a supposed romantic triangle between the two ladies and a male friend). Miriam Hopkins, who plays a supporting role in The Children's Hour, originally essayed the Shirley MacLaine role in These Three. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
My Beautiful Laundrette
After the death of his wife and his subsequent descent into alcoholic near-agoraphobia, a crotchety Pakistani intellectual convinces his shady entrepreneur brother to provide work for his son in this multi-layered portrait of the immigrant experience in Great Britain. Young Londoner Omar (Gordon Warnecke) isn't sure what he wants out of life, but his uncle Nasser (Saeed Jaffrey) provides a corrupt, capitalist role model as Omar graduates from washing cars for the old crook to running his run-down laundromat. After a chance meeting with Johnny (Daniel Day-Lewis), an old school chum whose flirtation with fascism deeply wounded Omar's principled Papa (Roshan Seth), Omar hires the young thug to work for him. Soon, the pair begin a romantic relationship that remains as under wraps as the illicit drug-running and enforcement work they perform for Nasser's associate, Salim (Derrick Branche). On the domestic front, Omar must balance his knowledge of Nasser's long-running affair with posh Brit Rachel (Shirley Ann Field) with his own loyalty and attraction to Nasser's westernized daughter, Tania (Rita Wolf). After successfully transforming his laundrette into a vision of resplendent pastel suds and providing a bright spot in his otherwise squalid London neighborhood, Omar seems to have a bright future in Nasser's organization. The spectre of Johnny's past, however, combines with Omar's conflicted immigrant loyalties to threaten the sense of identity the young man has managed to stake out for himself. British-born, half-Pakistani playwright and novelist Hanif Kureishi won an Oscar nomination for his screenplay for My Beautiful Laundrette, which was originally filmed for BBC television. Kureishi collaborated again with director Stephen Frears on Sammy and Rosie Get Laid. ~ Brian J. Dillard, Rovi
Imagine Me & You
A new bride finds she's tempted to leave her husband under circumstances she never anticipated in this romantic comedy-drama. Rachel (Piper Perabo) and Heck (Matthew Goode) are longtime sweethearts who have decided to take the plunge and get married, but on the day of their wedding, while Rachel is walking down the aisle, she finds herself struck by the beauty of Luce (Lena Headey), who has been hired to do the floral arrangements for the ceremony. While Rachel thinks little of this at first, she finds she can't get Luce out of her mind, and when Rachel invites Luce over to dinner in hopes of fixing her up with Coop (Darren Boyd), Heck's best friend and best man, she learns the lovely florist is a lesbian. When Rachel and Luce meet again while shopping, they strike up a friendship that deepens into something more, until Rachel declares her attraction to Luce -- and Luce reveals she feels the same way. Rachel has never had a relationship with a woman before, and while she's fallen deeply in love with Luce, she isn't at all sure of what to do next, and Heck soon realizes something has gone wrong in their marriage. Produced under the title Click, Imagine Me & You was the first directorial credit for screenwriter Ol Parker. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
Kissing Jessica Stein
A woman searching for the perfect man instead discovers the perfect woman in this romantic comedy. Jessica Stein (Jennifer Westfeldt) is a woman with a solid career as a copy editor, but her love life isn't much to write home about; she's been through a long series of disastrous first dates that refuse to evolve into second dates, and the well-intended advice of her best friend Joan (Jackie Hoffman) and former boyfriend Josh (Scott Cohen) isn't helping a bit. One day, Jessica is scanning personal ads in the newspaper with her friends, and she sees one with a quote from her favorite poet. Jessica reads on to discover that she has a lot in common with the person who placed the ad -- too much so, since it turns out the notice is from a woman, Helen Cooper (Heather Juergensen), who manages an art gallery. Jessica figures it would at least be nice to hang out with someone who shares her interests, and she gives Helen a call. Jessica and Helen quickly strike up a close friendship that evolves into something more intimate, though neither of them has ever been involved with another woman ... and Helen is a bit more avid about her new romantic horizons than Jessica. As their relationship progresses, Jessica finds herself struggling with her feelings about her new sexual outlook, and she isn't sure how to break the news about her relationship to her mother (Tovah Feldshuh) as she tries to decide if she should bring Helen along to her brother's wedding. Kissing Jessica Stein was based on the off-Broadway play Lipschtick, which was written by Jennifer Westfeldt and Heather Juergensen, who starred in the original stage production as well as this film adaptation; the film won both the Critics' Special Jury Award and the Audience Award at the 2001 Los Angeles Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
La Cage aux Folles
An international comedy sensation based on a successful French stage play, La Cage aux Folles depicts the farcical chaos that results when a gay man attempts to pose as straight for the benefit of his son's future in-laws. Renato (Ugo Tognazzi) owns a popular nightclub and is the long-time lover of Zaza (Michel Serrault), a female impersonator who is the club's main attraction. Unfortunately, Renato's son Laurent (Remy Laurent) has told none of this to his future father-in-law, an important figure in a morally conservative political organization. Not wanting to ruin his son's chance of happiness, Renato agrees to pose as a straight man, but he finds his familiar habits, and those of the even more flamboyant Zaza, getting in the way at every turn. Zaza is the one who comes up with what he thinks is an ideal solution: he'll dress in drag and pose as Renato's wife. Naturally, the plan does not pan out as expected. La Cage aux Folles' pleasant, unthreatening comic sensibility attracted a large mainstream audience in both Europe and the United States, which was at the time unusual for a film with a homosexual theme. Indeed, the film was popular enough to inspire two remakes: a stage musical and, nearly two decades later, the Hollywood comedy The Birdcage with Robin Williams, Nathan Lane, and Gene Hackman. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi
Boys Don't Cry
Based on a true story, this drama was adapted from the life of Brandon Teena, born Teena Brandon, a woman who chose to live her life as a man and suffered tragic consequences as a result. In 1993, 20-year-old Brandon (Hilary Swank) leaves Lincoln, Nebraska for the nearby community of Falls City, where she sports a crew cut, favors jeans and boots, and is regarded as a man by most of the people in town. While Brandon's friend Lonny (Matt McGrath) warns her that sexual outsiders aren't looked upon kindly in Falls City, she develops a reputation for being something of a ladies' man, and is soon living with a single mother named Candace (Alicia Goranson). But when Brandon meets teenage Lana (Chloe Sevigny), the two become romantically involved almost immediately. Brandon makes friends with Lana's mother (Jeanetta Arnette) and a burly ex-con named John (Peter Sarsgaard). John and his buddy Tom (Brendan Sexton) run with a rough group of men who like to drink and carouse, and they accept Brandon as one of their own. However, when Brandon ends up in jail on a traffic violation, her secret comes out, and, while Lana stands by Brandon's side, John and Tom feel betrayed -- and their anger soon boils over into violence. A distinguished feature debut for director Kimberly Peirce, Boys Don't Cry was enthusiastically received in its showings at 1999 film festivals in Venice, Toronto, and New York. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi