Friday, 19 September 2014

Exclusive Interview with the Stars of STRANGE LOVE!

                At Toronto’s fabulous filmfest this year, I had a unique  opportunity!  I was thrilled to interview Jon Lithgaw and Albert Molino, both starring in the soon-to-be-a-hit  film STRANGE LOVE -- which opened the Toronto International Film Festival last week ! I happened on the twosome by chance really; I was on my way to Bruce LaBruce’s trendy little late-nighter at Bambi’s on Queen Street, when who should I catch my eye, sharing a couch, but the venerable stars of stage in screen  in – of all places – the TIFF lobby!
                Well I wasn’t about to spoil this chance. I told them I was representing a prestigious blog (i.e. ANOTHER BLOG NOBODY READS) and asked them if we might have a little ‘Socratic dialogue’ about their upcoming film. When they said yes, I simply yanked over a convenient potted plant, and perched myself on the edge.
                Molino was well groomed and sat almost a foot away from Lithgaw, who -- bow tie rakishly askew -- was characteristically (and charmingly) unkempt.  “So I see you guys don’t sit too close to each other when you’re not acting in a gay movie.” I opined, ironically. Both laughed. It was genuine laughter, Molino deep and husky, Lithgaw a bit higher and grittier (he’s a smoker).
                “Well we don’t view it as a ‘gay movie’” said Lithgaw, putting cute quotation marks around the latter words with his fingers.
                “Do you agree, Albert?” I asked.
                “Most certainly,” said the slightly more formal Molino. “This is a film about people.”
                “I’ve heard that there’s a double Oscar buzz around the flic,” I said, a mischievous twinkle in my eye.
Lighgaw jumped in immediately, and earnestly: “It’s not about awards, it’s about the work.”
                There was an elephant in the room; I knew I just had to ask a question that was certain to be on the minds of all serious cinephiles -- “You two share -- shall we call it -- a ‘gay kiss' In the movie. What was it like actually doing  that kiss?”
                 Both men started to speak at the same time, and then apologized to each other.  Albert nodded to Lithgaw, who began: “You know, when it comes down to it, a kiss is a kiss –"
                “And a sigh is a sigh!" quipped Molino
                (Hearty laughter from all.) “Yes,” agreed Lithgaw, “and if you’re playing a character who is in love with someone else, it’s quite natural for the kiss to grow from that love.”
                Mischievous again, I leaned in from my improvised seat beside the Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree “And how did your wives feel about that kiss?”
                Again, we all laughed heartily. Then Albert filled the brief,  ensuing silence: “I think on the day  we shot that scene, my wife did hold me just a little more tightly as we wished each other goodbye.”
                “Well, Jon’s a looker,” I proffered.
                “Why thankyou” said Lithgow decisively, with a witty flick of the hand.
                “And your wife, Jon?”
                “She’s a trooper, she knows it’s all part of the job, ever since Roberta Maldoon in GAP.”
                “Ahh. Now I have a rather serious question to ask you,” I said -- as we reached  the heart of the interview.
                “I’m girding my loins” rejoindered the redoubtable Lithgaw.
                “Well,”I said, trying to look them both in the eye--  at the same time -- no mean feat, “do you think this film will have any effect on your careers –"
                Lithgaw interrupted me. “Are you serious?”
                “Well, because it’s a gay film, I mean.’
                “Oh Pshaw!” joked Lithgaw, histrionically (a bit of his film character showing through!)
                Albert eyeballed me seriously. “I can’t believe you asked that question! Surely we’ve moved beyond that! This is a movie about human relationships. A deep and important movie with a message.”
                “And what IS that message” I asked, pithily.
                “That everybody is the same.”
                “Exactly the same,”  agreed Lithgaw.  “Inside, we are all, exactly alike.”
                My mind moved quickly to images of spleens and large intestines, thumping hearts and kidneys, and useless little gall bladders, pondering thoughtfully the similarity between all of our digestive systems. However I didn’t have time to marvel at the depth of these stellar observations because both men were immediately swept up by handlers. Well enough with celebrity interviews!  I was on my way to experience the joys of Bruce’s  little Toronto-grown sybaritic film festival romp in hipster heaven!
                But (and I mean this truly, madly, deeply) it was a joy sharing it all with you.

Friday, 5 September 2014

How Not to Become a Disney Character in Real Life

Since everybody seems so goddamn healthy, normal and damn near perfect these days — I offer the following advice: 
Seven sure fire ways to help you NOT end up being a Disney character in real life.

1. Don’t have pluck!
This is particularly directed at young women, as the female heroines of Disney movies seem to have an inexhaustible store of ‘pluck. ‘Pluck’ is a lot cuter and more fun than determination. It’s about responding to adversity with uncharacteristically spontaneous action. What’s the alternative? Pessimism and gloom. Come on, just lie in bed all day. Proust might be a good role model. Wear heavy makeup that runs when you cry. And cry a lot. And whatever you do, don’t whistle while you work.

2. Don’t have a big chest. 
This is directed to male and female humans, not to other animals. Disney birds and otters don’t tend to be chesty, but if you are a human Disney character you are certain to have giant pectorals (male) or bouncy perky boobs (female). So if you are a male: don’t work out.  And if you are a female: don’t get breast implants. If God hadn’t meant you to sag, he wouldn’t have invented gravity.

3. Develop some attractive vices. 
Present day ‘physically fit’ culture doesn’t offer us much of a choice: you’re either a perfect Disney character or a heroin addict. What about a much less tragic alternative? Drink and/or smoke yourself to death. Hey - you’ll meet a better class of people when you smoke. Smokers are rebels at heart with a fantastic, deep, self-deprecating sense of humour. You won’t meet any Disney characters on a smoker’s patio!

4. Become an anti-environmentalist.
Being an environmentalist is the first sign of having become a Disney character. You are not only Gluten-free, but obsessed with the Brazilian rain forest, and overly concerned with the next generation. Let’s face it, it’s too late to stop global warming, and plastics can’t be recycled anyway. So who cares about the kids? I certainly don’t plan on having any. I’m with Lee Edelman. There is no future and I want to be part of that.

5. Screw a lot of different people and tell everyone about it.
Kissing and telling is a lost art since these days everyone is pretending they don’t have sex outside marriage (even fags!). So be a slut and make sure to tell everyone about each little horny detail. The prouder you are of your sexual excess the less likely you are to morph into A Little Princess.

6. Don’t Dream.
Live in the here and now. Look around you; that’s what life is. Dreaming about tomorrow is something you do if you want to avoid living in the present.  When you’re fifty years old you’ll figure out that your dreams don’t come true anyway, so why not save yourself the disappointment and stop dreaming now.

7. Try not to sing. 
Well if you kept reading past past number four,  then you may have escaped becoming a Disney character in real life. So, okay. I’ll let you sing a little in the shower if you want to — but only while you’re smoking and getting screwed by a stranger, okay? 

Only then.