When it comes to pop culture, I'm a pretty easy going guy, and I'm inclined to say I have a pretty good sense of humor about myself. So when I saw a preview for a movie called I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, I didn't think much of it. Except that I didn't think it looked like a very good movie.
Basically, my first impression was that it didn't seem to be terribly well thought out. As in, awkward characters who are byproducts of the past, waltzing around on screen doing things that made people chuckle five years ago.
And so we have Chuck and Larry, a movie that dares to even breathe Hollywood life to actual gay issues. Except the characters aren't gay. And the movie winds up with an all-too-heterosexual feel anyway. Personally, I'm not sure I understand how characters pretending to be gay can give you a sense of what it's really like to be gay. Oh wait, I get it. Pretending to be gay does make you understand, inasmuch as closing your eyes makes you understand what it's like to be blind.
I was talking to my brothers today, and they reported that they'd gone to see this movie ("film", as one of my brothers likes to say). When I said "WHY?" they just looked at me like I was crazy. "It was actually pretty good, Phil."
When they asked why I didn't want to see it, I first said that I thought it just looked like a shitty B movie. They pressed me further, and I mentioned that I also wasn't crazy about the premise of the movie. Not in the sense of my being an intense gay rights advocate, saying that it only reinforces stereotypes and is a setback for the community, because I know enough about fiction (and the world) to know better.
What gets me is that this movie has a gay theme, and yet it's afraid to actually take ownership of being gay. Apparently, it's okay to have gay characters, so long as a) they have some ulterior motive, and b) they're actually straight.
Perhaps if I was at another point in my life than I am at the moment, I would feel differently. I'm at a place right now where, while I'm close to my family, I'm extremely distant. It's difficult to find what's right when the only impression I get is that somehow, I'm the one who's wrong. What I get from this is that the Hollywood movie gets it right, and yours truly is off by a long shot.
Perhaps seeing this movie and talking about it might open the door to communication, but honestly, I feel like it's not me who needs to take this next step. I've already done so, and just have to hope that soon, I'm no longer the only one who has.