Friday, February 17, 2006

The 2006 PAGE International Screenwriting Awards :: Welcome

Notablog: Heart-Broke-back Mountain

Notablog: Heart-Broke-back Mountain: "December 14, 2005
Heart-Broke-back Mountain
I had the occasion to see the film 'Brokeback Mountain,' which, yesterday, received seven Golden Globe nominations. The Ang Lee-directed film, which has become known in certain circles as the 'gay cowboy movie,' stars Heath Ledger, who received a nomination for Best Actor in a Drama, and Jake Gyllenhaal, as well as the nominated Michelle Williams (of 'Dawson's Creek' fame).
I don't like to say much about movies for fear of including too many spoilers, so I will just say this: The film is heartbreaking. It is a testament to the damage that is done to human lives by self-alienation, repression, and fear, internalized homophobia and the pressure to conform to certain 'roles' in society. It can be tender, sad, and funny. The performances are superb; the cinematography is gorgeous; the minimalist score is effective; the nature-backdrop is awe-inspiring.
Right-wing scare mongers notwithstanding, the intimate scenes are not all that explicit (though the first sexually charged scene between the two main characters does have a Roarkian-Fountainhead quality about it... viewers will know what I mean when they see it). I suspect some people will always be upset at the thought of two guys kissing, or even touching. And still others will be upset because this film is not simply about two cowboys rolling in the hay, but two men who have a romantic-love connection.
I do wonder if the PR guys were scared for Ledger and Gyllenhaal, however; is it a coincidence that Ledger has a 'Casanova' film coming out on Christmas day and that Gyllenhaal is featured in the recently released military-themed 'Jarhead'? It's almost as if some 'handlers' in the actors' camps said: 'Let's make sure we get a few 'mach"

�Brokeback Mountain�: A Hit With Red State Women - Arts Extra - Newsweek -

�Brokeback Mountain�: A Hit With Red State Women - Arts Extra - Newsweek - "By Susanna Schrobsdorff
Updated: 11:16 a.m. ET Jan. 20, 2006
Jan. 20, 2006 - If you think discussions about �Brokeback Mountain� are winding down, think again. The story of a doomed love affair between two cowboys in 1960s Wyoming has become a surprise commercial success, as well as a critical hit. On Tuesday, one day after its best-picture win at the Golden Globes, Ang Lee�s film based on an Annie Proulx short story hit No. 1 at the box office, topping the mainstream sports drama �Glory Road,� which was showing on about three times as many screens. With a nationwide take of more than $33 million, it has already earned more than double its production costs.
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This weekend the Focus Features film, which stars Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal as hunky star-crossed lovers, will move to about 1,200 screens (up from 684) and reach even more suburban markets. But don�t necessarily expect �Brokeback,� which has a fairly explicit sex scene with the two men, to ignite widespread heartland protests. So far it has played relatively well outside the traditional coastal city areas where somber indie hits usually rise and fall. Producer James Schamus explains: �What�s driving the gross now is the gigantic numbers from the small and medium-sized cities, not New York and Los Angeles.� He attributes its success to lots of advance, Internet-driven buzz and near-universal critical acclaim.
Ben Fritz, a box-office reporter for Variety magazine, says that Focus has had a deliberately cautious strategy in distributing the film. 'They've been very judicious in letting it build,' he says. 'By the time it reaches these small cities, there's been s"