Out Films: “After Louie” Starring Alan Cumming

Alan Cumming in After Louie

Artist and AIDS activist Vincent Gagliostro’s debut feature After Louie will premiere on March 30, 2018 in New York City to be followed by a video on demand release across cable, internet and satellite platforms.

Synopsis:

After Louie stars Alan Cumming (The Good Wife) as Sam, an artist and activist from ACT UP who lived through the early years of HIV/AIDS and is struggling with survivor’s guilt and Zachary Booth (Last Weekend) as Braeden, a seductive younger man that Sam meets in a bar. The pair drop their pants and quickly thereafter Sam drops his emotional guard.

They develop an intergenerational relationship that reawakens Sam’s artistic soul and reviving his wilted heart.

Beyond the evocative performances and setting, After Louie is a love letter to New York City: engaging its rich backdrop, while honoring the history of the gay rights movement and the progress that’s been made.

Amid the arguments over politics, loss, aging, white privilege and the dark side of gay sexuality, After Louie offers up a pervasively wicked sense of humor and a big, generous, survivor’s heart.

The cast also includes Zachary Booth, Sarita Choudhury, David Drake, Joseph Arias, Justin Vivian Bond, Eric Berryman, Patrick Breen, Wilson Cruz.

Gagliostro began his professional career as an art director in the worlds of fashion and beauty, creating campaigns for a variety of major brands while working with renowned photographers.

In 1987, Gagliostro became a founding member of ACT UP (The AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power).

In the early 90’s Gagliostro started a quarterly journal titled, XXXFRUIT, which was then commissioned by the Whitney Museum for an online version. At the same time he was the creative director of QW, a New York weekly gay news magazine.

He was a contributing cinematographer for the Oscar nominated documentary, How To Survive a Plague.

“The film’s passion, insights and feeling frequently hit home. A thoughtful contemplation of what it means to be gay today.”
— Sarah Ward, SCREEN DAILY

“One of the most exciting queer films of 2017 so far.”
— Jude Dry, INDIEWIRE

“After Louie may well be the most important gay movie you will see in your lifetime.”
– John Paul King, LOS ANGELES BLADE

Queer Short Film: “Authentic”

For a bit of #ThrowbackThursday, I bring you the short film, Authentic, which debuted in 2012.

The short film explores a bachelor’s pursuit of happiness. Or, is it his avoidance of it?

The official description from the creative team of director Manuel R. Mota & producer Aytac N. Turkay:

Aaron is a bachelor living a stereotypical life with a decent earning. He works in a bank, managing people’s finances, but he has trouble to manage his own life in late 20’s. Whenever he finds a minute of privacy in his day, he hastily delves into his own fabricated reality: a world of excessive sex, pornography, and masturbation. However, this is a manifestation of his feelings of intense lack of connection (Anorexia-Avoidance) and the loneliness around him.

One day Aaron meets a new neighbor and establishes a connection. This moment lights a spark inside that grows, opening a door to achieve the emotional and physical satisfaction he was longing.
Is Aaron ready to give up his comfort zone?

“Authentic” is a portrait of a person desperately trying to find meaning in the compulsive pursuit of climax. In his quest for satisfaction he either doesn’t see his real desires or ignores it deliberately?

After the film’s premiere in December 2012, Authentic was well-received on the film festival circuit with Mota receiving Best Director honors at the 17th Sydney Film School Festival. The short also was won the Audience Award for favorite short.

Watch below. Warning: adult content/NSFW.

(h/t NewNowNext)

Out Film: “God’s Own Country”

One of the most talked about film’s at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was God’s Own Country, the debut feature film from director Francis Lee which chronicles the story of a rural romance set in the lonesome hills of West Yorkshire.

The film has been compared to Brokeback Mountain, but that’s neither a fair nor accurate oversimplification.

“I love Brokeback Mountain,” Lee tells Empire. “The comparison feels like an honour, but they are very different. Brokeback is of a particular time and place – its two central characters can’t be together because of society’s attitudes. In God’s Own Country, it’s all to do with the central character’s inability to open up.”

The film follows Johnny Saxby (Josh O’Connor), a young farmer who is joined on his West Yorkshire farm by a gentle Romanian migrant worker, Gheorghe (Alec Secareanu), when Johnny’s father suffers a stroke. Working the farmlands, the two men find a quiet intimacy.

Due for release September 1st.

Out Film: “Handsome Devil”

From Breaking Glass Pictures, be sure to check out queer film, Handsome Devil, in limited release today in New York City and Los Angeles, and available OnDemand June 6.

Set in a boy’s boarding school, the earnest characters deliver a charming and charismatic coming-of-age story that’s reminiscent of Dead Poets Society.

Synopsis:

Ned, the bullied outsider, and Conor, the new boy and star athlete, are forced to room together at their boarding school. The boys take an instant dislike to each other, and seem destined to remain enemies until an English teacher, Mr. Sherry, begins to drill into them the value of finding one’s own voice.

This lesson, however, isn’t appreciated by everyone, particularly rugby coach Pascal, who has his own agenda and harbors some deep suspicions about the boys’ teacher.

HANDSOME DEVIL was written and directed by John Butler (The Bachelor Weekend​) ​and stars Andrew Scott (Spectre, “Sherlock”​),​ Fionn O’Shea​ (The Siege of Jadotville​, ​The Aftermath​)​​,​ ​Nicholas Galitzine​​ (High Strung, The Beat Beneath My Feet​)​, Michael McElhatton​ (The Zookeeper’s Wife, “Game of Thrones”​), ​and ​Moe Dunford​ (​​”Vikings”)​.​

Short Film: “The Curse Of The Un-Kissable Kid”

Director Mark Marchillo spins a totally charming tale of Joshua, a 14-year-old teen who’s coping with bullying and his own sexuality.

One day, Joshua meets a psychic at a local carnival who gifts him with a magic potion guaranteed to help him make more friends.

BUT – there’s always a “but,” right? – after he drinks the potion, it’s revealed that unless he’s able to experience a true love’s kiss within 24 hours, he will disappear.

Who thought up that kind of “help?”

He and bestie Caitlyn immediately set out to find the perfect love, but to no avail.

Finally, they set up a kissing booth, maybe bigger numbers will set the odds in Joshua’s favor!

And along comes Caitlyn’s neighbor, Harry, and that’s when the real magic sets in.

Young love, kissing AND musical numbers!

Watch below.

Out Film: Indie Favorite RETAKE Now Available

After a successful journey on the film festival circuit, LGBT indie film RETAKE is now available on DVD and Video On Demand streaming.

The film, one of my Top 5 LGBT films of 2016, is a suspenseful drama following two broken souls on a wayward journey to The Grand Canyon. Written and directed by Nick Corporon, RETAKE stars Tuc Watkins (Desperate Housewives) and Devon Graye (Dexter).

“Jonathan,” played by Watkins,  is desperately trying to remember his past, and Graye is the prostitute who hopes to leave his behind.

Synopsis:

Jonathan (Tuc Watkins) — a handsome businessman — flies into San Francisco and hires a young hustler (Devon Graye) to accompany him on a road trip to the Grand Canyon, with a catch: he must role-play as someone named “Brandon.”

On the road, “Brandon” comes to realize he’s playing a vital role in the recreation of Jonathan’s lovelorn past.

As the hustler digs for clues, Jonathan insists that he stick to the role he was hired for. Eager to leave his own past behind and feeling a strange connection with his unique client, he sheds his own identity and plays the part.

An amorous game of obsession and manipulation commences, as these two broken souls get closer to their destination.

Corporon’s script and direction achieve a delicate balance of suspense and wistful sadness as both the audience and Dexter slowly come to understand the need for Jonathan’s journey. The production is sparse, and I mean that in a good way. We never veer from the chemistry of the two talented and quietly affecting lead actors. Watkins and Graye both deliver impressively compelling performances as two lost lonely souls who battle a romantic tension that’s palpable.

“Carving out some distinctive new territory in the world of queer cinema…Captures the simultaneous threat and allure of sex between strangers, as well as the unbridled pleasure that can result from giving yourself so trustingly to someone you don’t know.” – The Hollywood Reporter

“Beautifully acted and directed with great sensitivity.” – Huffington Post

“Palpable and heartbreaking.” – SF Bay Times

I highly recommend the film. Indie filmmaking of this level is rare, especially in the LGBT genre. The dramatic tension, tight screenplay and undeniable chemistry of the lead actors makes for quality viewing.

On Amazon, you can find the DVD  here, and available for streaming here. Also available on iTunes here.

Devon Gary (L) and Tuc Watkins (R)

Out Film Moonlight Wins ‘Best Drama’ At Golden Globe Awards

I took my husband, Michael, to see the brilliant Moonlight this afternoon because I needed him to understand why I’m so passionate about this moving “coming of age” film of a young gay black man in Florida.

And then, tonight, this beautiful, haunting little independent film won the Golden Globe Award for “Best Film – Drama.”

More wine!!!

To see my past coverage of the film, click here and here and here.

Out Documentary: “All Male All Nude” From Gerald McCullouch

Check out the next big project from my longtime buddy and uber-talented filmmaker, Gerald McCullouch (CSI, Bear City and Daddy).

All Male All Nude (I’ve already got your attention, yes?) is an upcoming documentary set in one of America’s only all-nude, all-male gay strip clubs, Swinging Richard’s in Atlanta. Continue reading “Out Documentary: “All Male All Nude” From Gerald McCullouch”

Trailer: RETAKE

Having enjoyed critical success at film festivals across the country, RETAKE, will enjoy a limited Los Angeles theatrical January 6, 2017. The film will be available on Broadcast on Demand January 3, 2017, and DVD and internet VOD January 10, 2017.

The indie LGBT/gay drama follows two broken souls driving to The Grand Canyon by director/writer Nick Corporon stars Tuc Watkins (Desperate Housewives) and Devon Graye (Dexter).

Watkins stars as a man who is desperately trying to remember his past, and Graye is the prostitute who is trying to leave his behind.

“…captures the simultaneous threat and allure of sex between strangers, as well as the unbridled pleasure that can result from giving yourself so trustingly to someone you don’t know.” – The Hollywood Reporter



Synopsis: Jonathan, a devastated middle-aged man who hires a young male hustler to accompany him on a road trip from San Francisco to the Grand Canyon. Eager to leave his own life behind, the prostitute soon comes to realize that he’s playing a crucial role in recreating Jonathan’s heartbroken road trip from his past.

Out Film: “Lazy Eye”

Directed by Tim Kirkman, Lazy Eye follows Dean, a 30-something graphic designer from Los Angeles, as he reconnects with his old bf as they undertake a physical and emotional journey on a weekend together in Joshua Tree.

Critics loved it:

Variety: “So well-written and acted you feel like you’re eavesdropping. Refined and emotionally sophisticated, Lazy Eye makes you realize how rare it is to see a movie that gives you the privilege of listening to authentically smart conversation.”

LA Times: “Sexy and emotional. Kirkman and cinematographer Gabs Mayhan capture the sun-dappled beauty of the landscape. Lucas Near-Verbrugghe and Aaron Costa Ganis both anchor and lift the film.”

LA Weekly: “The sexual chemistry between the two leads is off the charts. An effective and emotionally honest drama. Writer-director Tim Kirkman has a keen eye.”

Lazy Eye comes out in New York and Los Angeles this weekend, with a DVD and VOD release Tuesday, November 15th.