Thursday, December 15, 2005

Brokeback backlash begins

I kinda figured it wouldn't take long for the right-wing in this country to come out swinging against Brokeback Mountain now that it's racked up some impressive critics' awards and is all but assured a bevy of nominations at this year's Academy Awards. I had read somewhere that conservative groups were deliberately not fanning the flames of controversy as to not draw too much attention to the story's gay plotline. But once awards started getting heaped upon it, they had no other choice.

I wonder how many of the people speaking out against it have actually seen the movie. I've read the short story upon which the movie is based and let me tell you, while the story is definitely about two gay ranch hands, there's so much more to it than that. It's about relationships, it's about the inevitable heartbreak that comes from trying to be something that you're not. It's about how even had Ennis Del Mar and Jack Twist had the words to express their feelings for each other, the societal mores of the time would have squashed them like a bug. But ultimately, to me, the story is about missed opportunity, and how much it can hurt when the opportunity you missed was true love.

I'm lucky -- I get to spend every day with the woman that I love more than anyone in the world (with the possible exception of my daughter, who I love in a completely different way.) But I think that for so many people in this world, gay or straight or somewhere in between, true love misses them, whether by a mile or an inch. In the short story, the ache just emanates off the page. I couldn't help but feel pain and heartbreak for Ennis and Jack. I won't let Heidi read the story before we see the movie because I think that the movie experience might be diluted for her if she knows specific plot points.

I really wish there was more tolerance in this country. I mean, I'm by no means the most tolerant person in the world -- my feelings toward the extreme right-wing and "religious" right in this country would mark me as a liar were I to make that claim. But I just hope that someday people will realize that love is love, and the validity and importance of that love is not cheapened or less valuable by who they choose to love.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well said my man. One of the biggest myths in the world today is that America is not a tolerant country. I know a lot of Americans who are quite happy with themselves and with other people's choices and how they wish to live their lives. I mean, naturally there may be some guys in the audience who squirm a little uncomfortably during the more intimate scenes in this film - but hey, that's fine. There's much more to it than that - human love - something we can all identify with. And those people who actively protest about the movie - well - they're clearly not getting enough lovin of their own.

I do hope this film does well. At least people can start embracing the fact that love can happen in any circumstance, and with the fact that civil partnerships are legalised in Britain from tomorrow, well, we can only pray for a global shift.

On another matter, I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas. I'll let you know the details of some great Madonna forums for you - a gift he he.

Take care - joyeux noel. P