1. rudy says

    I am hoping this is good–it already has an amazingly talented cast; otherwise, this has the potential to be horrific. This is the same way I felt about “Brokeback” before seeing it. Will “Save Me” also rise to the level of the script? I truly hope so.

  2. says

    This is a deeply affecting little movie about the “Ex-Gay” movement in which Chad Allen and Bobby Gant play to guys with drug priblems who fall in love while at an “Ex-Gay” camp run by the phenomenal Judith Light. All the performances are teriffic but it’s Light who walks away with the film as a nominal “villain” who we discover is not only ulti-faceted, but really her own worst enemy.

  3. rudy says

    Ah Sparks, my comparison of the movies was to the high quality source material of both productions. Are you not aware of other source material–novels, plays–that were turned into abominably bad movies? See, e.g., “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolfe?” where La Liz could not remember her lines so Albee’s play was bowdlerized (alt: bowlderized).

  4. Michael Bedwell says

    Allen, thankfully, has come a long way since the first time I saw him in person— before he’d been outed, waiting to cross the street at the corner of 17th & Castro in San Francisco. He had such a petrified look in those beautiful eyes that anyone would recognize him that I wanted to hug him and say, “Don’t be afraid.”

    Obviously, he’s not anymore, and he and Gant are among those at the top of my list of “Good Guys.” They could easily, like MOST gay actors, have nothing to do with gay-positive films and their careers in homo-permeated yet homophobic Hollywood would probably be better for it. And Judith Light has, for years, been among an equally small group of straight-identified celebrities there for us again and again. Bless them all!

    I urge everyone to see the film, regardless of his/her feelings about religion. Its success is imperative if more gay-positive films [and YES we DO still need them!] are to be green-lighted.

  5. Paul R says

    Wow, the fundies are going to have a field day with this, especially that first poster. I’m surprised it’s only opening in New York; SF and LA (among other cities) could certainly generate big audiences.

    Rudy, I loved the firm version of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf. Though it was devastating. Liz might have just been over-acting her drunken character. Or maybe she was just drunk.

  6. anon says

    Don’t tell me, I haven’t seen it, but I’m guessing the lovers commit suicide a la Romeo and Juliet (Julian in this case?) or some such thing and thus maintaining the perfect track record of dead gay lovers in the movies. Real progress is not having gay actors, its having a happy ending.

  7. richie says

    This movie has such a great message.

    I’m trying to be nice….

    It’s a bad movie. Amateurish, even. Sorry. Caught it at a film festival early last year and am a big fan of all involved.

    Again, great message. Poor execution.

  8. davefromtampa says

    I agree with Richie, I saw it in Tampa for a fundraiser for the Tampa G&L Film festival, aka clip, and really wanted to like the movie. The heavy emphasis on religion was a turn off. I just could not believe that gay men in a group home could hide their feelings while praying was realistic. The guys in the movie are pretty, I would have been bed hopping there. But I like the fact that they used so many out men in the film, just wished I could have gotten into the film.

  9. Michael Bedwell says

    “the perfect track record of dead gay lovers in the movies”???

    Poppypenis! You obviously haven’t been to the track in years. Never entirely true, as a collecter of “classic” gay films ephemera, I know it hasn’t been “the rule” for a long, long time. If one paid attention, even the lovers in the nearly 4-decades old film so many love to hate—”The Boys in the Band”—were alive and loving at the end.

    Regardless of the varying artistic quality of the films, we’ve come a long way, baby, since Shirley MacLaine hung herself in “The Children’s Hour,” since Don Murray slit his wrists in “Advise & Consent,” and since a giant phallic tree crushes Sandy Duncan leaving her lesbian lover to be swept away by “The Fox” Keir Dullea.

    How about “Maurice,” “My Beautiful Laundrette,” “Dona Herlinda,” “Making Love,” “Beautiful,” “Trick,” “East Side Story,” “Latter Days,” “Big Eden,” “Torch Song Trilogy,” “The Sum of Us,” “Object of My Affection,” “In & Out,” “Quinceañera,” and the more recent and tender “Shelter”?

    As for actors themselves, with respect, the logical extension of insisting out gay actors play gay characters is that only straight actors could play straight characters. The real need is a synthesis: out gay actors cast in serious straight roles. And [attention Oprah, et al.], ostensibly straight actors not forced to defend their sexuality when playing gay roles. Sorry, but James Franco is merely feeding the homophobic trolls.

  10. says

    I was fortunate to be able to attend the premiere of Save Me at Sundance and see it 3 more times on the big screen. It is an amazing movie that makes me laugh and cry every time I see it.

    As for the rightwinger reaction I suggest reading the blog entry below. I was sitting there when this happened and I was just blown away.

    I was lucky enough to spend much
    my Sundance experience with the cast and they are an amazing group of people. I will admit I’m a bit biased since I’m Chad’s webmaster for his official fan site.

  11. says

    I saw the film at NewFest last summer. While it’s not on the level of Brokeback Mountain (if anyone really believed that blurb, anyway) it is a well made, thoughtful, and affecting film, and yes, Judith Light walks away with the picture.

  12. Kevin Koffler says

    I saw this movie at the closing night of CinemaDivirse– The Palm Springs Gay and Lesbian Film Festival. It was thought provoking, moving and unlike any queer movie I have seen. And using openly gay actors to play gay characters on screen– wow, what a concept.

  13. says

    O don’t know what movie you saw, Richie. This was a very well-executed low-0budget indie. Maybe the fact that it lacks CGIs and a head-pounding score aleinates you.

    This movie is Fundieproof in that it’s not an obvious attack on on aobvious villain. As played by Light she’s a women with a genuine talent for dealing with people in trouble. It’s just that she gives them the WORST advice imaginable as a direct result of her own very personal fialings. There’s a lot of depth and resonance here.

  14. Jack H. says

    As I assume the film has to do with evangelical (low church Protestants) Christians running an “ex-gay” group, why the use of a specific Roman Catholic crucifix in the first poster?? The second film poster has it correctly as the evo’s would never use such specific Catholic imagery–it conflicts with their theology for one, which puts emphasis on the risen, not crucified or bloody Christ.

  15. anon says

    MB: leseehere, Longtime Companion (check), Philadelphia (check), BBM (check), Cruisin’ (half-check?), Torch Song didn’t exactly save Matthew B’s character from street thugs either and Object of My Affection was a barrel full of monkeys kind of happy ending, wasn’t it? Otherwise, my comment involved a certain amount of artistic license.

  16. Michael Bedwell says

    Sorry, Jack, you’re not as omniscient as you think. I was reared in a Holy Roller church and one saw both examples of Crosses with and without Jesus.

    Further, one sees the Cross alone throughout Catholicism: on the altar cloth, in the Stations of the Cross, and on the vestments of priests, bishops, cardinals, even on the staff and vestments of His Holy Heiny Himself:

    But thanks for adding some irrelevant anal retentiveness to the discussion.

  17. Craig says

    A few thoughts:

    I haven’t seen the movie yet, but the poster looks fantastic. The imagery is quite strong and provocative.

    I find that I am interested in seeing the movie more because of the criticism of it than anything else. Mostly the critic seems to be of the variant “Well it’s about religion so it’s bad.” You lose me with tha that sort of comment. I have no more interest in gay orthodoxy about religion than I do with fundies. Although I would see a movie on both. I won’t have my thoughts controlled by such thinking.

    Or, “well I know it will be a depressing ending so it’s bad.” First, is this true- does it end badly? Second, I have no problem with sad endings so long as they make sense.

    Finally, I hope the movie is good and does well. Right now, there are a lot of gay movies in the production pipeline. However, given the audience I am starting to wonder if the problem is that gay men want only certain type of films- rom coms or similar genre pics but nothing different or challenging. I am not judging that. But it does tend to mean the creative side will be limited to creating the same stories we have seen for 20 years now. I am not even saying this movie is all that good. Just an observation about the limited tastes that seem to be on display by some.

  18. Butch says

    I saw the movie last year as well. Well before its “premiere” at Sundance. It was horrible. I don’t think we have to support a film just because it’s gay themed and has Chad Allen and Judith Light. It felt like an after school special about gays and religion and made you ask, where were the gay Christians when this was made? As a gay Christian I wanted more than just it’s depressing and bad; we all know that. What are we doing about it? If you want to support the film because of the stars and producers, go for it. If you want a great gay themed film watch something like Tru Loved or Breakfast With Scot.

  19. Wessy says

    I saw ‘Save Me’ at Sundance, and it was a big disappointment. I wanted to like it, and I give a lot of credit to all the people behind it for their earnest effort. But as a gay man who is very familiar with the ex-gay movement from my own experience in a deprogramming ministry, I have to say that scene after scene simply didn’t ring true to the emotional and spiritual experience of what such a program, and one’s passage through it, is like. The outward trappings are there, but the characterizations and dialogue are mostly trite, arch, stereotypical and, ultimately, heavy-handed. A handful of moments in this movie feel genuine, but the vast majority of the film comes off as stilted and regrettably after-school-special-like, suffocating under the estimable weight of its good intentions. It’s not my intention to mock the film — again, I really do appreciate the effort — but there’s simply no comparing it to the sublime ‘Brokeback Mountain’.

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