The ten-year anniversary blu-ray edition reissue of Mysterious Skin (Strand) opens with a new two minute intro by queer filmmaker Gregg Araki that neither adds nor detracts from the film. Mysterious Skin was the indie movie version of a perfect storm. The best film of Araki’s directing career, it was his first time adapting a novel, Scott Heim’s acclaimed first book of fiction, for the big screen. The film also contained Harold Budd and Robin Guthrie’s haunting score. But the real coup, for a low-budget indie, was the amazing cast.
Step back in time to 1950-something, to the beginning of the Golden Age of Television, step into the theater which is now a TV studio, specifically Desilu Studios and enjoy the “filming” of two episodes of the classic TV comedy I Love Lucy.
If you’re a fan of Lucy, Ricky, Fred, and Ethel, then you’ll want to make sure to snap up some tickets to the hit touring production I Love Lucy Live On Stage, now in its “second season.” This production is currently at Baltimore’s Hippodrome Theatre through October 26. What can audiences expect from something that’s probably so familiar to so many? A really fun evening!
There’s a lot to be said about the 25th anniversary 180-gram vinyl reissue of Bonnie Raitt’s multi-Grammy Award-winning 1989 album Nick of Time (Capitol), remastered from the original analog tapes. First, rest assured that it sounds as marvelous and timeless as the first time you heard it, on vinyl or CD (it was originally released in 1989, after all). Producer/musician Don Was (of Was Not Was fame) met the challenge of lifting the longtime singer, songwriter and blues diva out of shocking semi-obscurity and getting her the long overdue attention she had deserved. Sure, Raitt (the son of Broadway actor and singer John Raitt), had released nine albums on Warner Brothers, from 1971 to 1986, gaining a devoted following, skirting chart success and developing a devoted following in the heyday of FM radio, but superstardom eluded her.
The subject of Arthur Vanderbilt’s Best-Kept Boy in the World (Magnus Books, 189 pages, $19.99) is Denham “Denny” Fouts, arguably the greatest male prostitute of the 20th century. He was considered the most expensive prostitute and was a muse to Truman Capote. Vanderbilt’s book looks at the Jacksonville, Florida-born Fouts and how he used his magnetic charm and personality for a life of adventure and addiction around the world.
After a slight slump, queer cinema is making a strong comeback. In 2014, the movie Love is Strange (Sony Pictures Classics) is almost singlehandedly leading the way. Directed and co-written (with Mauricio Zacharias) by Ira Sachs, Love is Strange stars John Lithgow and Alfred Molina as Ben and George, respectively, a gay couple in New Yorkwho have been together for 39 years. The film opens on the joyous occasion of their wedding, surrounded by family and friends. Soon after, the celebration turns to tragedy when George, who teaches at a Catholic school, is fired from his job. Faced with dire financial prospects, the couple is forced to live apart – Ben with his nephew Elliot (Darren Burrows), Elliot’s wife Kate (Marisa Tomei) and their teenage son Joey (Charlie Tahan) and George with neighbors (and gay cops) Ted (Cheyenne Jackson) and Roberto (Manny Rodriguez) – until they are able to find a suitable living situation. Intimate and poignant, Sachs makes it easy for audiences from all walks of life to get involved with these men, their complex situation and their search for resolution and dignity. I spoke with Sachs about the film during the summer of 2014.
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