In a Heartbeat

Swoon over the animated short In a Heartbeat

A gay-themed animated short film created by two students, In a Heartbeat has quickly become a viral internet sensation. The film, which follows a gay middle-school crush, has attracted over 15 million views on YouTube only days after it was first posted.

 

The filmmakers, Beth David and Esteban Bravo made the short film as their senior thesis project while attending the Ringling College of Art and Design, where they recently graduated, in Sarasota, Florida. A true labour of love that took about 18 months to complete – with the help of a popular Kickstarter campaign and an unavoidable journey to Los Angeles – the filmmakers quickly realized the film’s potential.

 

Though it isn’t the first animated children’s story to include gay characters, it’s still an area of entertainment that is rarely seen and the recent online reception makes clear that people are interested.

 

Check out this heartfelt, truly impressive work below.

 

Beautiful Thing

Throwback Thursday: Beautiful Thing

Released in 1996, this tender story of two teenagers and their sexual coming-of-age in a working-class development in London is still an inspiring, tender and deeply emotional experience.

 

Jamie (Glen Berry) is a reserved teen, close to his pub manager mom (Linda Henry), who prefers old Hollywood musicals to sports. His friendship with his hunky neighbor Ste (Scott Neal), a fellow student who suffers through a troubled family life, soon develops into a sexual and eventually loving relationship. How the two boys tentatively handle their nascent romantic and sexual drives and how it affects their family and friends is handled in both a fresh and surprisingly upbeat fashion.

 

Directed by Hettie MacDonald and written by Jonathan Harvey based on his own original play of the same name, Beautiful Thing was originally intended for television broadcast only, but it was so well-received that it was subsequently released in cinemas. The atmosphere of the film is heavily influenced by a soundtrack consisting almost entirely of the music of the Mamas and Papas and Mama Cass Elliot.

 

Beautiful Thing still holds a 90% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. A wonderful comedy-drama, it may possibly still be the best “coming out” movie to date.

Fourplay

Now Available On Demand: Fourplay

Director Kyle Henry‘s Fourplay, which tells four intimate tales of sexual triumph and travail set in four American cities, is now available to stream instantly at TLAgay.com! The four stories told are…

 

Skokie: Marcy, a closeted, mid-fifties lesbian church choir member, pines for Gail, the wife of her Methodist pastor, Roger. When Gail and Roger head out of town for the weekend, Marcy offers to watch their nightmare of a dog, Myra. Marcy works hard to win the pooch over, and ultimately accomplishes much more than that.

 

Austin: Lily, early thirties, is fertile and off the pill. She and her boyfriend Kai plan a casual night of sex after a long dry spell, but Lily’s unwed sister and sick baby nephew make hooking up at Lily’s place impossible. As they prowl the sultry summer night streets, they debate whether marriage and babies are really in their future … and arrive at a startling compromise.

 

Tampa: Late-twenties Luis loops into a local mall to grab lunch in the food court and a quickie in the public restroom. Paranoid about his own small package and clearly nervous about the situation, he scouts for possible partners, letting his imagination take over when reality proves thoroughly unsatisfying.

 

San Francisco: A confident, mid-thirties cross-dressing prostitute, Aliya, travels for a job to Marin County. Arriving at a seaside estate, Aliya meets Anne, the client’s wife, who engages Aliya in nervous conversation. Once Aliya puts her at ease, Anne leads to the door behind which her quadriplegic husband awaits and gives Aliya specific instructions on how to care for him. Left alone with this challenging client, Aliya must summon all her emotional strength and creativity to accomplish her mission.

 

Two of the tales in Fourplay premiered on the festival circuit as stand-alone shorts. Tampa, easily the raunchiest and funniest of the bunch, premiered at the Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight in 2011 and played Sundance in 2012. The heartfelt San Francisco premiered at LA’s Outfest in 2010 and won a special jury commendation from Cardiff’s Iris Prize Festival, the world’s top monetary prize for LGBT short films, and Best Narrative Short at NYC’s NewFest in 2010.

 

Fourplay premiered in its current form as a feature-length anthology in June 2012 at San Francisco’s Frameline Film Fest and has played Los Angeles’ Outfest, Oslo’s Int’l Film Festival, Atlanta’s Out on Film, New Orleans’ Film Fest, Austin’s aGLIFF/Polari, and the Guanajuato Int’l Film Festival.

 

According to director Kyle Henry, “My goal with Fourplay was to provide understanding for characters participating in sexual acts that might otherwise be considered deviant and to depict sex acts as potentially cathartic moments in our lives as human beings.” He went on to say that his idea was to “represent a spectrum of sexual experience, hence four stories of varied style and tone. Like a good book of short stories, the sum total should add up to an impression of my view of the world without the easy trickery of interlocking story overlap or recurring characters. I’m inspired by the surreal films of directors Nicolas Roeg, Ken Russell, and Lindsay Anderson, particularly their anarchic subversion of power through expressive excess. I hope that the scope, nonjudgmental attitude and expressive representation of sex will implicitly challenge notions of ‘normal’ behavior through which sex and bodies are seen in ‘mainstream’ cinema.”

 

Now you can enjoy this wild and unique collection INSTANTLY at TLAgay.com! Check out the image gallery and trailer below!

 

 

Todrick Hall's Get Out 2

You are now in the drunken place…

Todrick Hall has become famous for his spin on classic flicks like Beauty and the Beast and The Wizard of Oz. Now the internet and Broadway star serves up his version of one of the biggest hits of 2017 so far, Get Out.

 

If you haven’t seen Get Out yet, do so. It’s an exhilarating mix of horror, suspense and comedy with some pointed social commentary that makes all of the over-the-top violence and gore go down a lot smoother. Seeing the original film will also help you appreciate this terrific parody.

 

In Todrick Hall’s version of the film – Get Out 2: Get Out of the Closet – Colleen Ballinger (aka: Miranda Sings) takes over the Alison Williams role, bringing home her new boyfriend to meet her parents, who in the original movie were played by Bradley Whitford and Catherine Keener. In this version her parents are a gay couple and they have thrown a pool party filled with twerking gay boys to welcome their girl’s new boy-toy. Enjoy!

 

 

 

Jesus

Jesus Trailer

The volatile relationship between a wayward teen (Nicolás Durán) and his disapproving father (Alejandro Goic) comes to a head when the boy seeks shelter from the police, in this intense new film from Chilean writer-director Fernando Guzzoni.

 

In Santiago, Chile, 18-year-old Jesus lives alone with his father Hector in a flat where the TV covers up their inability to communicate. The rest of the time, he dances in a K-pop band, hangs out with friends and does drugs, watches trashy video clips online and has dangerous sex in public places – all in constant search of the next big thrill. One night, he finds it in an irreversible misadventure with friends – a violent event that brings Jesus and Hector closer than ever, but also threatens to tear them apart forever.

Read More
I'm Fine: Season One

Image Gallery: I’m Fine

Cute, 20-something Nate (Perry Powell) isn’t hurting for dates. Even his best friend Jeff (Lee Doud) confesses his feelings in a moment of drunken vulnerability. Nate, though, is still hopelessly obsessed with his ex-boyfriend Joey (Shaughn Buchholz). Poignant and funny, this brand-new Dekkoo Original Series follows Nate as he tries to find closure and break himself out of romantic purgatory.

 

A fresh, honest, and humorous look at gay male relationships, friendships and the often-blurry line between the two, this adorable “pocket series” consists of eight short episodes, each around 5-10 minutes in length. Brandon Kirby, a Los Angeles base director, created each in an effort to challenge long format series and embrace the short attention spans of contemporary viewers.

 

A massive hit on Dekkoo, this beloved show is coming to DVD in October. Check out our exclusive image gallery below!

 

 

4 Days in France

4 Days in France Trailer

Out now in select cities, Jérôme Reybaud’s remarkably accomplished feature debut is a sly and sophisticated take on gay romance in the 21st century. On a seemingly ordinary night in Paris, Pierre takes one last look his lover Paul’s sleeping body, then steals away into the early morning light. Where he’s headed, neither of them know. Pierre’s only guide is his Grindr app, which leads him on a series of encounters with an indelible cast of characters across the French countryside. Paul sets out after him, using his own phone to track Pierre’s movements in a strange and wonderful game of Grindr cat-and-mouse.

 

4 Days is France has been earning joyous reviews. Check out some of the most glowing examples below along with the official trailer from The Cinema Guild.

 

“A pleasingly discursive road movie for our geosocial age”
– Melissa Anderson, Village Voice

“A uniquely tender film, and a wonderful ode to the intimacy that comes from casual encounters with perfect (and on occasion beautiful) strangers. A first film that is born from a filmmaker who already knows a great deal about sex, love, and cinema.”
– Ira Sachs (director of Keep the Lights On and Love is Strange)

“A kind of ode to cruising writ large… There’s something endearing, if not uncanny, about the way the film evokes universal truths about erotic wandering through the extremely specific figure of the French gay man.”
– Slant Magazine
“The actors’ elocutions are lovely and absurd, the sights idyllic, the film’s mood unruffled. Reybaud’s expertly ordered world is predicated on a genteel kindness, of strangers and Pierre alike, and starts to crack ever so slightly the further north he travels and the colder it gets.”
– MUBI Notebook

 

The Wound

The Wound Trailer

Brimming with sex and violence, The Wound is an exploration of tradition and sexuality set amid South Africa’s Xhosa culture.

 

Every year, the tribe’s young men are brought to the mountains of the Eastern Cape to participate in an ancient coming-of-age ritual. Xolani, a quiet and sensitive factory worker (played by openly gay musician Nakhane Touré), is assigned to guide Kwanda, a city boy from Johannesburg sent by his father to be toughened up, through this rite of passage into manhood. As Kwanda defiantly negotiates his queer identity within this masculine environment, he quickly recognizes the nature of Xolani’s relationship with fellow guide Vija. The three men commence a dangerous dance with each other and their own desires and, soon, the threat of exposure elevates the tension to breaking point.

Read More
Beach Rats

Beach Rats Trailer

On the outskirts of Brooklyn, Frankie, an aimless teenager, suffocates under the oppressive glare cast by his family and a toxic group of delinquent friends. Struggling with his own identity, Frankie begins to scour hookup sites for older men. When his chatting and webcamming intensify, he begins meeting men at a nearby cruising beach while simultaneously entering into a cautious relationship with a young woman. As Frankie struggles to reconcile his competing desires, his decisions leave him hurtling toward irreparable consequences. Eliza Hittman’s award-winning Sundance Film Festival hit is a powerful character study that is as visually stunning as it is evocative.

Read More
Maurice - New 4K Restoration

Maurice’s New 4K Restoration

Back in 2015, Cohen Media Group made a deal with Merchant Ivory Productions and acquired 30 films under their label. Part of the deal stated that Cohen Media Group would restore and re-release these classic titles – with original director James Ivory having a hands-on role in the massive endeavor. We’re now able to catch a glimpse of with this glorious 4K restoration of the gay classic Maurice.

 

Now considered a classic gay novel, “Maurice,” E.M. Forster‘s self-suppressed 1914 love story, was not published until after his death in 1970. With the same reverence, respect and regal authority that they brought to A Room with a View and Howard’s End, Merchant Ivory Productions created an exquisite and sexually bold adaptation of the author’s semi-autobiographical novel.

Read More