Cho scores with ‘Bam Bam & Celeste’ and DVD Shorts.
I’m beautiful, he’s beautiful, she’s beautiful—we’re all exactly how we’re supposed to be!”
Such is the closing anthem, not to mention the pervasive theme, of Bam Bam & Celeste, a hag-on-the-road-with-her-fag flick written by Margaret Cho. Cho also stars as Celeste with comedian Bruce Daniels, who frequently opens for Cho’s stand-up shows, playing Bam Bam.
Tired of the relentless bashing by the resident pretty people in DeKalb, the two are bound for the Big Apple where they hope to find, if not fame and fortune, at least a spot on a personal makeover television show. Who could predict that their competition on that show would be their same nemesis from high school days? Madness!
The film costars queer luminaries Alan Cumming, Sabrina Matthews, Wilson Cruz, and Kathy Najimy. But the standout supporting performance comes from Jane Lynch (The L Word, Best in Show), playing a “lesbian Lone Ranger” BB and C meet on their journey. Hi ho, dildo!
Fans of Cho’s stand-up performances who squeal when she swoops into a verbal impersonation of her mother will squeal even louder as they realize Cho herself plays “Mommy.”
Other top gags to watch out for: the eyelash curler elevated to Holy Grail and a too-funny tip of the wig to Angels in America.
The recent True Colors tour concert, which Cho emceed, screened a quick trailer for BB&C between musical acts. If the ovation it received from the Pride-pumped Cynthia Woods Mitchell crowd is any indication, expect copies of this DVD to fly off the shelves and into the media collections of fans far and wide, beautiful and even more beautiful.
Available August 14 from Wolfe (www.wolfevideo.com or 1-800-GET-WOLFE).
The Life and Times of Allen Ginsberg
Jerry Aronson’s The Life and Times of Allen Ginsberg is now available in a two-disc special edition featuring a director’s cut with updated and unseen footage. Ginsberg, of course, was a gay visionary poet, a Buddhist peacemaker, and a political revolutionary long before the words “hippie” and “yippie” entered the American consciousness. And he was very close friends with beat legend (and legendary hunk) Jack Kerouac. Aronson’s film is an excellent guide through the golden days of American bohemia. If one isn’t interested in Ginsberg, the film can be appreciated for the contributions of Paul McCartney, Bono, Johnny Depp, Philip Glass, Joan Baez, William Burroughs, and Norman Mailer, among many others. 1994. From New Yorker Video (www.newyorkerfilms.com). — Review: Jack Varsi
Paul Bowles: The Complete Outsider
The life of the recondite author of The Sheltering Sky is examined in exclusive interviews with Allen Ginsberg and Bowles himself. An icon to the Beat Generation, the mysterious man from Morocco intimately discusses his friends (among them Gertrude Stein and Tennessee Williams), drug use, his marriage to writer Jane Bowles, and his ambiguous sexuality. The DVD includes a new interview with Ned Rorem and the filmmakers. 1994. Directed by Catherine Warnow and Regina Weinrich. From First Run Features (www.firstrunfeatures.com). — Preview: Eric Dieckman.
Inside the Actors Studio: Barbra Streisand
“I have four concerts to do and then I’m going to stay home and cook and have babies.” That’s how Barbra Streisand described her future in a 1966 interview aired on the BBC. Guaranteed, her compelling 2004 interview with Bravo’s Inside the Actors Studio with James Lipton provides a far more up-to-date version of what really happened in the following 40 years. Available August 7 from Shout! Factory (www.shoutfactory.com). — Preview: Nancy Ford
Why do so many propaganda films make easy choices in their narratives? The protagonist is so easy to love; the antagonist is grossly hateful if not altogether diabolical. True, the message here is valid: Bi-national GLBT couples, wherein one member lives in the U.S. illegally, have been known to be treated unfairly. But the delivery, suggesting that straight couples in the same position have absolutely nothing to fear, is almost insulting. 2006. Co-written and directed by Ralph Torjan. From FATfilms (www.fatfilms.net). — Review: E. D.
Peter is an engaged straight. Or is he? When he meets the openly gay free spirit, Nassim, his life changes dramatically. And when Nassim disappears after a lovers’ tiff, the police come barging in soon thereafter, investigating Nassim’s murder. Sex kills. But not without an erotic flashback montage. 2006. Directed by Susanna Edwards. Swedish with English subtitles. From TLA Releasing (www.tlareleasing.com). — Preview: E.D.
Out of Hand
Sebastian and Paul are trouble. The two criminal teens abduct 30-year-old Sonja and haul her to their abandoned factory hangout, but what to do with her? Submissive Paul develops feelings for their victim and becomes distant. Domineering Sebastian becomes increasingly irked by this as he attempts to ignore his own growing feelings…for Paul. 2005. Written and directed by Eva Urthaler. German with English, Spanish, and French subtitles. From Picture This! Home Video (www.picturethisentertainment.com). — Preview: E.D.
Lesbian Sex & Sexuality
Katherine Linton (AIDS: A Pop Culture) directs six episodes of the here! Television series produced “for women, by women,” exploring three of our favorite subjects: lesbian sex, lust, and the representation of both. Here, here! Available August 14 from Genius Products and Liberation Entertainment. Details: www.heretv.com/lesbiansex/. — Preview: N.F.
Edie Sedgwick (Sienna Miller) was the original “It” girl. Her rise from art student Andy Warhol’s (Guy Pearce) muse glorified counterculture, drugs, and the madness of gaining contact fame by surrounding oneself with the famous and fabulous. The unrated director’s cut promises to be “extra steamy.” Look for appearances by Hayden Christensen (Star Wars prequels) and Jimmy Fallon (Saturday Night Live). 2006. Directed by George Hickenlooper. From The Weinstein Company (www.weinsteinco.com). — Preview: E.D.
That Girl: Season Three
The landmark television series, and the first to spotlight a young female character taking charge of her life, That Girl premiered in 1966 to critical acclaim and instant stardom for gay-friendly Marlo Thomas. Also serving as the show’s producer, Thomas set out to create a new role for primetime women, proving that they could be strong, independent, and happily single. Over the course of five seasons, wannabe actress Ann Marie (Thomas) progressed from a naïve young girl who dreamed of becoming a star to a smart, confident woman who could stand up to her parents and become engaged to her boyfriend on her own terms, and never lose her sense of identity. Available August 7 from Shout! Factory (www.shoutfactory.com). –Preview: Suzie Lynde
Pet Shop Boys: Cubism in Concert
Featuring tracks from their 25-year career, this 27-track live-performance DVD also includes behind-the-scenes extra footage filmed in Mexico, picture gallery, audio commentary, and a 12-page book written by the Pet Shop Boys. A true celebration of pop, this concert was filmed in High Definition on November 14, 2006, in Mexico City at the Auditorio Nacional. The DVD includes a slipcase cover, half of which will feature openly gay Neil Tennant, half Chris Lowe. From Rhino (www.rhino.com). — Preview: S.L.