Just Charlie (c) Wolfe Releasing

Out This Week: Just Charlie

Football is Charlie’s joy. When he has the ball at his feet, he can make magic happen – a gift that many teenage boys only dream of. Now the opportunity for Charlie to play professionally has come along. It looks like Charlie will be able to succeed where his father could not. But Charlie has a secret, a secret locked in his heart. Now, with his future seemingly mapped out, the secret cannot stay hidden any longer. Charlie’s decision to reveal the truth tears his once united family apart and puts his friends in turmoil. No-one is quite sure of themselves or each other anymore and the road back to harmony is paved with obstacles, prejudices and confusion.

 

Featuring a stunning performance from young newcomer Harry GilbyJust Charlie is a deeply emotional new film from writer Peter Machen and director Rebekah Fortune. The film won the “Best Feature Film for Youth” prize at the Zlin Film Festival and was chosen as an official selection at the Rochester LGBT Film Festival, the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival and the Edinburgh International Film Festival. The People’s Movies.com called it a “Profound family drama . . . this is a tale rooted in the human condition – honest, touching and willing to open the minds of an audience.” Midland Movies.com called it “A beautiful film that pulls no punches.” And Kneel Before Blog.com said it’s “An excellent and moving film that tells a deeply personal and emotional story. Harry Gilby delivers an astounding performance as the title character and the journey he takes is wonderfully written.”

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Snails in the Rain (c) TLA Releasing

This Weekend’s VOD Favorites

With the launch of the brand-new TLAgay.com, the Gay Cinema Video On Demand experience we have been offering for a long, long time was upgraded and improved. We have expanded (and continue to expand) our selection of new and old gay-themed movies available for your viewing pleasure. Here’s just five of our current favorites, from various years, that you may have missed – ALL available to watch INSTANTLY! These aren’t our TOP 5, by any means – just a handful of flicks we want to highlight.

 

Attention of Men (c) Border2Border Entertainment

Attention of Men (c) Border2Border Entertainment

Attention of Men

2017, Canada

This 19-minute short film, available on VOD courtesy of Border2Border Entertainment, follows Colt (Evan Spergel), a struggling aspiring writer who collects money after having sex with a complete stranger. Soon after the stranger is gone, an unexpected knock comes. Fearful for his safety, he makes a run for it. Somewhere out there, Colt falls into the hands of Ely (Adam Kenneth Wilson) a wealthy man. Their relationship quickly evolves into a complex dynamic of father and son. As Ely’s demons unravel, Colt becomes witness to this king all alone in his castle.

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Daddy and the Muscle Academy (c) Kino Lorber

Throwback Thursday: Daddy and the Muscle Academy

One of the year’s most acclaimed gay films, award-winning filmmaker Dome Karukoski‘s Tom of Finland is coming to DVD and Blu-ray in February courtesy of Kino Lorber. Known to the world as Tom of Finland, artist Touko Laaksonen shaped the fantasies of a generation of gay men with his proudly erotic and taboo-shattering drawings of testosterone filled, muscle-bound men. But who was the man behind the leather? This stirring biopic follows his life from the trenches of WWII and repressive Finnish society of the 1950s through his struggle to get his work published in California, where he and his art were finally embraced amid the sexual revolution of the 1970s. Tom’s story is one of love, courage and perseverance, mirroring the gay liberation movement for which his leather-clad studs served as a defiant emblem.

 

Also coming in February, timed with the release of the new biopic, is a special edition Blu-ray of an unusual gay classic. Blending live action, animation and interviews, Daddy and the Muscle Academy, originally released in 1991, is a steamy documentary from filmmaker Ilppo Pohjola that explores the life and art of the famed gay iconoclast – whose pornographic drawings of massively-endowed men in leather, uniforms and totally naked have aroused a generation of gay men.

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Don't Call Me Son (c) Zeitgeist Films

Writer-director Anna Muylaert discusses her work and the new film Don’t Call Me Son

Tall, dark, androgynously handsome Pierre wears eyeliner and a black lace g-string while having sex with both boys and girls. The confusion only goes deeper when the teenager’s single, working-class mom is arrested for having stolen him (and his “sister”) at birth. Thanks to the wonders of DNA, he’s returned to his biological parents: bourgeois, straight-laced and thrilled to have him back… at least until he shows up in a zebra-print mini dress. The turmoil of adolescence is plumbed with wit and compassion by writer/director Anna Muylaert in Don’t Call Me Son. Her earlier film, The Second Mother, also dealt with familial loyalty and class tensions. Actress Dani Nefussi gives completely believable knock-out performances as both mothers, and newcomer Naomi Nero defies expectations as a broodingly intense, potentially volcanic six-footer in stiletto heels.

 

Born in São Paulo in 1964, Muylaert studied cinema at ECA/USP where she directed many shorts, among them the awarded The Origin of Babies. She has directed the feature films Durval Discos, Collect Call and The Second Mother (which won the Special Jury Award for Acting at the Sundance Film Festival and the Audience Award for Best Film in the Panorama Section at the Berlin Film Festival). The Second Mother was sold to over 30 countries. Formerly a film reviewer, she also collaborated on the scripts of the features The Year My Parents Went on Vacation and Xingu by director Cao Hamburger, the excellent and deeply underrated Futuro Beach by Karim Ainouz.

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Tom of Finland (c) Kino Lorber

Coming Soon: Tom of Finland

In one of the year’s most acclaimed gay films, award-winning filmmaker Dome Karukoski brings to screen the life and work of one of the most influential and celebrated figures of 20th century LGBTQ life.

 

Known to the world as Tom of Finland, artist Touko Laaksonen shaped the fantasies of a generation of gay men with his proudly erotic and taboo-shattering drawings of testosterone filled, muscle-bound men. But who was the man behind the leather? This stirring biopic follows his life from the trenches of WWII and repressive Finnish society of the 1950s through his struggle to get his work published in California, where he and his art were finally embraced amid the sexual revolution of the 1970s. Tom’s story is one of love, courage and perseverance, mirroring the gay liberation movement for which his leather-clad studs served as a defiant emblem.

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Our Top 15 Gay Movies of 2017!

2017 was a great year for movies… and movies centered around gay men in particular. Not only was there a wealth of titles to choose from, but many of them rose above the gay movie niche and made a huge splash on the international film fest circuit. Some even broke through into the mainstream (looking at you, Call Me by Your Name). Check out our Top 15 Gay Movies of 2017 below and make sure to pick up your copies on DVD and Blu-ray at TLAgay.com! All but one of our top 15 are currently listed and we’ll be posting the final straggler (looking at you again, Call Me by Your Name) for pre-order as soon as it’s announced – most likely once it has finished making the award show rounds.

 

B&B (c) Breaking Glass Pictures

B&B (c) Breaking Glass Pictures

15. B&B

Director: Joe Ahearne

Lovers Marc and Fred (Tom Bateman and Sean Teale) initiated a major legal battle after they were refused a double bed at a remote Christian guest house. They came out of their court case victorious and now they’re back at the establishment to claim their conjugal rights. Triumph, however, quickly turns to terror when a scary Russian neo-Nazi also checks in. Their weekend of celebratory fun soon becomes a bloody battle for survival. B&B is a whip-smart and brutally funny dark comedy-thriller that has been earning rave reviews from critics – some of whom have even compared it to the work of Alfred Hitchcock. The Hollywood Outsiders, specifically, called it “a film Alfred Hitchcock would be proud of.” The Horror Society said it’s “frickin’ fantastic and a trailblazer for LGBT cinema.”

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Sebastian (c) Wolfe Releasing

Spend Valentine’s Day with Sebastian

Coming to DVD in early February – just in time for Valentine’s Day – is a brand-new romance from actor-writer-director-producer James Fanizza. He writes, directs and stars in Sebastian but does not in fact play him. He plays Alex, the guy who meets Sebastian (Alex House) and initiates a fling – this despite that he has a boyfriend, a boyfriend who just happens to be Sebastian’s cousin. They both agree to feel bad about what they’re doing, but they don’t consider not doing it.

 

Alex is an Argentinian student in Toronto for just one week; both know that the relationship  ends when he catches his flight back home. But the affair is irrepressible. They’re falling for each other whether or not they say the words, and it’s the kind of relationship that changes them, unlocks things hidden deep inside (and who can resist a boy with a dark and unspoken past?).

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The Guys Next Door (c) Passion River Films

Meet The Guys Next Door

Who, among us, can say that we come from a “normal” family? The Guys Next Door, a feature length documentary, offers an alternative to the traditional ideas of what constitute the nuclear American family. Meet Erik and Sandro, a gay couple with two daughters birthed by their friend Rachel with donor eggs. In her 40s, Rachel is married to Tony and they have three biological children of their own.

 

Rachel and Tony, a seemingly traditional married couple, live in the suburbs of Massachusetts with their children. Inspired by a TV program about the difficulties and costs associated with gay couples having children, Rachel, age 41, volunteers to be a surrogate – not once, but twice within two years – for Erik, her good friend from college, and his husband Sandro, an Italian émigré.

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BPM (Beats Per Minute) (c) Passion River Films

Coming Soon: BPM (Beats Per Minute)

In Paris in the early 1990s, a group of activists goes to battle for those stricken with HIV/AIDS, taking on sluggish government agencies and major pharmaceutical companies in bold, invasive actions. The organization is ACT UP, and its members, many of them gay and HIV-positive, embrace their mission with a literal life-or-death urgency. Amid rallies, protests, fierce debates and ecstatic dance parties, the newcomer Nathan (Arnaud Valois) falls in love with Sean (Nahuel Perez Biscayart), the group’s radical firebrand, and their passion sparks against the shadow of mortality as the activists fight for a breakthrough.

 

BPM (Beats Per Minute) is one of the most acclaimed gay films in a year full of them. The Los Angeles Times called it “A restless, engrossing dramatic portrait of Parisian activists fighting the AIDS pandemic in the early 1990s.” The San Francisco Chronicle said “BPM is a true and committed document, a worthy piece of filmmaking that keeps faith with the people it memorializes.” The film is also the official French submission for the 2017 Academy Award race for Best Foreign Language Film.

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Make the Yuletide Gay (c) TLA Releasing

Holiday Highlights: Make the Yuletide Gay

Every Monday in December we’re shining a spotlight on a gay-themed guaranteed to get you into the holiday spirit! Keep checking in for more Holiday Highlights. Welp, the big day is here. It’s Christmas – and we couldn’t think of a better movie to highlight than this one. Curl up my the fire, pour yourself a glass of egg nog and enjoy this week’s selection: Make the Yuletide Gay.

 

College senior, Olaf ‘Gunn’ Gunnunderson (Keith Jordan) is head-over-heels in love with his ultra-gay sweetheart Nathan Stanford (Adamo Ruggiero). The boyfriends part for Christmas break, each returning home to his family. Nathan’s cold parents won a trip to Israel, but somehow “forgot” to tell their son. When he hears that he’s to spend the holidays alone, he decides to make his way to Wisconsin to be with his sweetie and family.

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