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Old 09-21-2007, 11:07 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Humboldt County, CA
Posts: 6,339
We just returned "Short Bus" to netflix...

I was quite impressed. My partner and I have acquired the sporadic hobby/campaign of watching as much non-fake-fingernail/boob-porn cinema that has lesbian/gay content as we can possibly find, and this was a pleasant surprise in a genera/topical area that includes such utter and complete tripe as April's Shower.

That isn't a an apple to apple comparison though, as there is comparatively a lot more "art" (imho) in Short Bus, but you get my meaning.

I'm curious as to what others thought of the scene towards the end with the park bench and the lamp post. It was the only time where I felt like I had missed something.
Old 09-21-2007, 11:20 PM
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: New York
Posts: 22,322
I assumed it was meant to be symbolic of the therapist character's inner courage/ability to achieve orgasm.

I liked it all right...but I found it a bit pretentious. It was porn, but trying to be important/arty. Maybe I'm feeling put off because I saw some program about the difference between "art" and "porn" on IFC that was a bit too navel-gazey.
Old 09-21-2007, 11:39 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: 5th Dimension
Posts: 6,126
I really liked Shortbus. I saw it on the big screen. When the two Jamies look across at each other through the windows, I do believe I teared up a little. There was something really emotionally powerful about the way that was shot.

And I will never hear the Star Spangled Banner in quite the same way again.
Old 09-22-2007, 12:34 AM
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Utah
Posts: 9,440
I adored that movie, but I'm a big fan of John Cameron Mitchell, and I was looking forward to that movie for a long time. We too saw it on the big screen, and I too was really moved by the two Jamies see each other through the windows. In fact, even though it's been about a year since I've seen it, the memory of it still kinda makes me misty.

And I disagree that it was porn. John Cameron Mitchell set out to make a movie with life sex acts that is not porn. I don't think any of that sex was meant to be stimulating. I surely never felt like getting off to it, and I really enjoy porn...

Last edited by pepperlandgirl; 09-22-2007 at 12:37 AM.
Old 09-22-2007, 01:10 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Humboldt County, CA
Posts: 6,339
I don't think it was porn either. And I've been known to enjoy a porn flic or two as well.

Another reason I enjoyed this movie was that it resonated with my one New York City experience, back in '98/'99, as a roadie of sorts for a group of drag king performing dykes. We caravaned from Columbus, OH to Manhattan for the weekend with a one-night-only performance at Meow Mix. Mo B. Dick was in attendance in the audience.

Fun times!

Last edited by ComeToTheDarkSideWeHaveCookies; 09-22-2007 at 01:12 AM.
Old 09-22-2007, 01:13 AM
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: New York
Posts: 22,322
I guess any time they show actual, non staged, sex on screen, I tend to assume it's for pornographic purposes. I mean, all of the acts could have been done just as effectively without showing it explicitly. I'm just not sure why they opted to show it.
Old 09-22-2007, 01:45 AM
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Utah
Posts: 9,440
John Cameron Mitchell explained his logic

"I wanted to make a film about sex that had humor, emotional weight, and metaphor all at the same time," Mitchell says at his production office. "That's how I've experienced it in my life."

"I have seen so few films in which the sex felt really respected by the filmmaker," he says. "Hollywood too often shies away from it or makes adolescent jokes about it.... Sex is only connected to the negative because people are scared of it." To keep the sex real, Mitchell says he avoided casting professional actors—"stars don't have sex"—and instead placed ads in alternative weeklies inviting people to send in audition tapes. After selecting a cast, he began holding "structured improv" workshops about two years ago to work out a rough sketch of the plot.
So I guess precisely because people do see performances of sex on screen has nothing more than titillation or pornography, even though there's also humor, emotional weight, and metaphor. Sex is probably just about the fundamental human experience--why shouldn't there be a serious, emotional movie about it?
Old 09-22-2007, 02:37 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 3,111
I loved "Shortbus," and it's really annoying and lazy to call it "porn." It's a great date movie - a hilarious movie, a ridiculously heartbreaking movie at parts, and ultimately a ridiculously resonant and touching film...that just happens to have full penetration in it. Seriously.
Old 09-22-2007, 03:01 AM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: underpants
Posts: 19,743
"Explicit sex" != "porn."
Old 09-23-2007, 12:24 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: San Clemente, California
Posts: 4,952
Originally Posted by Cervaise
"Explicit sex" != "porn."
Yeah, I think one of JCM's goals was to help break that connection. This was definitely not porn. And the "they didn't have to show it" attitude bugs me. It can feel real artificial when filmmakers go out of their way to hide it (i.e. those special Hollywood sheets that only cover the female chest).

I liked the move. I can understand why the pretentiousness would be a turnoff for some, but I usually don't mind if the film is trying to do something interesting.
Old 09-23-2007, 01:31 AM
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Atlanta, Georgia - Female
Posts: 5,308
I loved the moment where Jamie says (paraphrased from memory) "I see happiness all around me, but it doesn't go under my skin." I thought it was a beautifully succinct summary of clinical depression.

But some elements of the movie just seemed lazy and contrived, as when a group of lesbians had to explain how to do Kegel a sex therapist.

Last edited by Fiver; 09-23-2007 at 01:32 AM.

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