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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Spring queer movie preview
by Richard Knight, Jr., for Windy City Times
2012-03-28

This article shared 2768 times since Wed Mar 28, 2012
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Spring officially arrives in a few weeks but as usual movies are ahead of Mother Nature, pushing summer blockbusters into early May. Although that means we're moving into teenage-boy, testosterone-heavy territory, movie-wise, that also means get ready for plenty of homoerotic undercurrent. And there are some openly queer films and film related events before we get to pride month. A few highlights:

April

A lot of teenage gay boys swooned over Leonardo DiCaprio (and no doubt, plenty of teenage gay girls had the hots for Kate Winslet), so heading back to Titanic on the advent of the movie's 15th anniversary is something to look forward to. Titanic 3D (the official title of the re-release) clues audiences in that the nearly four-hour epic is going to be screened with those darkening, irritating sunglasses. Early reports indicate that the movie hasn't taken to the process like a fish to water but the chance to see Leo, Kate and sassy Kathy Bates, and hear Celine Dion beltin' out the title track might be enough of a lure to get folks back into theatres. It's certainly enough for my husband and I to book return passage. April 3.

Bully, director Lee Hirsch's long-anticipated documentary about the psychological and physical effects of the epidemic of this long-tolerated practice in schools is put under the microscope in his tremendously moving film. The movie is now unrated. April 13.

That same weekend filmgoers will witness an attempt to reanimate the long moribund three stooges franchise. The trailer has a couple of laughs and if slapstick (emphasis on the slaps) is your thing, The Three Stooges reboot is going to make you nothing if not slaphappy. For queer audiences, the presence of Sean Hayes as one of the stooges and Jane Lynch in a supporting role might tip the balance in its favor. April 13.

Locally, the Chicago Latino Film Festival will be presenting a number of LGBT-themed films, including the excellent transgender teen drama Gunhill Road, La otra familia, Lorca: The Sea Stops Moving, To Die on My Feet and The Marriage. The fest will also present the Chicago premiere of Mariachi Gringo, queer filmmaker Tom Gustafson's eagerly anticipated follow-up to Were the World Mine. Ventura Pons, a celebrated figure in the Spanish LGBT cinema community will be honored at the fest as well. April 13-26. www.chicagolatinofilmfestival.org

The horror-sci-fi parody The Cabin in the Woods is a really clever reimagining of the oft replicated genre that finds horny teens heading into the woods for a weekend of fun and games and, naturally, ending up fighting for their lives—and there's some nice hunky beefcake to boot. April 13.

Locally, queer writer-director Patrick Wang stars in In The Family, an LGBT-themed drama focused on a custody battle that ensues after tragedy strikes a family headed by two dads. The film is being given a one-night screening at the Gene Siskel on April 14 (which Wang will attend) as part of their Asian American festival and begins a run at the Music Box a week later. www.musicboxtheatre.com April 20.

John Cusack plays the legendary gothic writer Edgar Allan Poe who teams up with a cohort (played by queer actor Luke Evans) to solve a series of mysteries inspired by his horror writing in The Raven. April 27.

May

Marvel Comic's The Avengers really ups the ante on the superhero movie by having all your comic-book blockbuster faves—Iron Man, Thor, etc.—join up to combat a worldwide threat. With Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Evans, and Chris Hemsworth repeating their muscular duties in their often-skintight superhero drag, the hunk factor is going to be through the roof (along with the action sequences, no doubt). May 4.

Queer audience faves Judi Dench and Maggie Smith head a juicy cast of British actors (Bill Nighy, Tom Wilkinson, et al) in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, in what promises to be yet another of those charming English imports—this a dramedy set in India about renewal during the sunset years. May 4.

Almost 45 years after the celebrated gothic soap opera Dark Shadows first invaded afternoon television, a new film version based on the beloved show is finally here. Director Tim Burton and star Johnny Depp (who loved the series as a kid) are teaming for their sixth outing. The advance trailer reveals that Burton's take on the material—featuring Depp as Barnabas Collins—is definitely tongue-in-cheek rather than dark and creepy. Diehard fans ain't happy about this but I'm taking a wait and see attitude. May 13.

Charlize Theron, Oscar winner for playing the lesbian serial killer Aileen Wurnos in Monster plays another monstrous creature—the evil queen in Snow White and the Huntsman, the latest in Hollywood's recent obsession with big-budget fairy tale movies (thanks to the success of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland). Kristen Stewart plays the hapless but far from hopeless title character, as audiences await the final Twilight installment and Chris Hemsworth again takes on the heroic hunk duties, this time as the courageous huntsman of the title who helps Snow White battle the evil queen. May 31.


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