06th Nov2016

Nocturnal Animals (Film)

by timbaros
50805_AA_4609_v2F Academy Award nominee Amy Adams stars as Susan Morrow in writer/director Tom Ford’s romantic thriller NOCTURNAL ANIMALS, a Universal Pictures International release. Credit: Merrick Morton/Universal Pictures International

Academy Award nominee Amy Adams stars as Susan Morrow in writer/director Tom Ford’s romantic thriller NOCTURNAL ANIMALS, a Universal Pictures International release.
Credit: Merrick Morton/Universal Pictures International

Tom Ford’s highly anticipated second film, Nocturnal Animals, is both brilliant and confusing, no thanks to it’s three stories in one arc.

Amy Adams is art dealer Susan Morrow (Amy Adams) who lives high above the Hollywood Hills in a seemingly loveless marriage to her philandering husband Hutton (Armie Hammer). One day she receives a book called Nocturnal Animals written by her ex-husband Edward Sheffield (Jake Gyllenhaal, in one of his best performances in years). It’s been 19 years since they broke up, well actually Susan broke it off with him, and she hadn’t heard or seen of him since then. So it’s bit unusual for her to receive a book from him, knowing that he’s been a struggling writer all his life. While her husband is away on one of his many business trips, she settles down to read the book. It’s then that Nocturnal Animals the book becomes a whole second movie, a second movie so brilliantly written, acted, and told that it should’ve been the movie that is Nocturnal Animals.

The book is a tale of revenge, rape and murder, brutal and in your face and it’s directed wholly at Susan. While it’s obvious it’s a work of fiction, it’s brutal and horrific. The book as we see play out tells the story of fictional character Tony (Gyllenhaal) with his wife Laura (Isla Fisher) along with what could be (or not) their daughter – this plot point is not very clear, driving in Texas when they’re menaced by a gang of rednecks led by Ray Marcus (Aaron Taylor-Johnson in a performance you will never forget). The menacing turns much much worse, but only towards the women, and it’s too much to give away here to explain what happens to them. Suffice it to say you will be on the edge of your seat while this story is unravelling.

Nocturnal Animals also replays the beginning of the relationship between Susan and Edward – how they met on a New York City sidewalk, then had a loving relationship, only for Susan to drop him (it’s not clear why she leaves him).

All of this is played out in just under two hours. Nocturnal Animals is a haunting romantic thriller with tension throughout, but it’s also a bit of a letdown after the brilliant A Single Man. Adams doesn’t have much to do except read the book in which the most exciting scenes of the film play out. A couple plot points are head scratching – a phone call Susan makes to her daughter – a real daughter or it she a hallucination due to Susan’s lack of sleep – (nocturnal), and Edward’s grudge for 19 long years – really? Nocturnal Animals is a movie that is so cruel and cynical, a story so much about disloyalty and especially about revenge, and it becomes very very violent, and very very dark, and Ford dedicates it to his husband Richard and their son Zach. A bit narcissistic if you ask me.

06th Nov2016

Beautiful Something (DVD)

by timbaros

brian-sheppard-as-brian-in-beautiful-soemthingFour gay men, all with issues in their lives, experience a night of mystery and sex in the beautifully told Beautiful Something.

Writer Brian (Brian Sheppard) is sexy and picks up guys in bars and on the street – but they love him and leave him. Then there’s Jim (Zack Ryan), a wannabe actor who doesn’t realize that the man he lives with really really loves him. And that man is Drew (Colman Domingo), a tortured and passionate artist who uses Jim as his muse and model. And then there’s Bob (John Lescault), a wealthy talent agent who is chauffeured around town picking up men but not necessarily for sex. It’s one night in Philadelphia, and these mens lives intertwine in search of meaningful connections on a night when anything is possible.

After a one night stand that for some reason goes horribly wrong, Brian goes for a walk and meets Jim, who’se just had a bustup with Drew. They are immediately attracted to each other and have sex in the house that Jim shares with Drew. Drew, meanwhile, is so involved in his art work that he’s doesn’t realize that Brian and Jim are downstairs getting it on. But this is not enough for Jim, and after Brian leaves and not wanting to stay home, Jim goes for a walk and is picked up, and intrigued by, Bob. They share a meal only after Bob tells Jim that if he’s an actor he must get out of the car. So Jim lies to Bob and they have dinner and eventually go back to Bob’s palatial home. Meanwhile Brian looks up an old flame, and Drew wonders what is really going on in Jim’s head. All this drama takes place in one sublime night, with the sprinkling lights of Philadelphia providing a romantic and perfect backdrop to the movie.

Beautiful Something beautifully explores the need for us gay men to seek out romance and adventure in the hopes of finding something, anything, meaningful. Director and writer Joseph Graham successfully captures a night these men, nor us, won’t forget. With excellent and realistic performances throughout, Beautiful Something, inspired by real-life experiences, will put a twinkle in your eye and the optimism of love in your heart.

Available on DVD & Digital HD on November 7th, 2016