Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Ennis Delmar, Film Club's Anus Bleeds For You

I'm not a homophobe.

I'm not scared of homosexuals any more than I'm scared of adulterers or hetero-fornicators. I'm not scared at all. Nor do I think that there's anything irrational about my position. Last of all, I don't harbor any hate toward anyone.

I am of the strong opinion that dudes buggering other dudes is wrong. Breaking marriage vows is wrong. Sleeping around is wrong.

I realize that I may be in the small minority with these opinions in film club.

I lay these few things on the virtual table for a specific reason: because there have been several mentions of Brokeback Mountain recently and subsequent proclamations about film club members.

I had never seen Brokeback Mountain until a few days ago, spurred on to watching it by the chorus of praise from my fellow clubbers.

Given what I write above, you'd probably jump to the conclusion that the above reasons are why I've avoided climbing Brokeback Mountain for 5 years.

Not at all. Or at least only partially.

In general, I try to avoid any film that lauds adulterous passions. That's true. I didn't see Brokeback for the same reason I skip most indie movies. I was not interested in the basic premise of Brokeback, that some sort of self-determined notion of romantic love/lust is the highest good, everyone and everything else be damned.

Specifically, though, and more importantly, I avoided Brokeback because I vowed never to see another Ang Lee film after what he did to the Hulk. Not so incredible.

Don't get me wrong. It's not specific subject matter itself that I find objectionable. No subject is off-limits. It's the way the subject is handled and what conclusions are drawn by the end.

Obviously, I can't get behind the Delmar-Twist "romance." I deny that there is anything at all romantic about it. There's really no way that I could like this film given its assumptions and given its conclusions. I only watched it because almost everyone else agreed on it and I wanted in on the party. I should have known better.

I guess I don't mind being the party pooper here.

Brokeback mountain, the physical location, is enshrined as an open, "pure" place where individuals can experience and indulge any primal impulse while shedding their social conditioning. Civilization is bad, as evidenced by the boxed-in claustrophobic living spaces, crying babies, and just plain grown-up responsibilities.

Life is hard away from Brokeback Mountain. This is part of the rhetoric of the film. But, there's not much to suggest that Jack and Ennis would last long as a couple or really like being together all of the time. Given the chance, I feel like these two selfish self-destructive idiots would be at each other's throats within a few months of domestic life together. Their lust-filled camaraderie lasts as it does because it lets them live out their comfortable little boy denials of reality, not because it's some soul match.

The thing that really kills the film for me is that I don't buy the relationship between the two male leads. Not at all. Two guys are working as shepherds up in the middle of nowhere. One cold night, they share a tent.

Then, they do the Jack Nasty.

I don't buy it.

I don't buy that that would have been the reaction of the Delmar character. It played out like a laughable gay porn fantasy. Please share your unsolicited homosexual tent encounter stories and prove me wrong.

I guess that's all I've got to say for now.

Start your angry rants...... NOW!

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