For the next week I’ll be spending most of my “free” time at the movies (or watching tapes at home—since the festival lasts just a week and has four venues, it’s impossible to see all the eligible movies in the proper setting), since I’m on the features jury for the Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival
, which started last night.
Since filmmakers might come across this site (hey, it’s happened before
), I’d better be circumspect about my opinions. However, I will say that the opening night film, Eating Out
, was surprisingly good. “Surprising” could seem like a diss—and perhaps I did have relatively low explanations for a first movie that was made in just 10 days on a budget of $50,000—but mostly I mean that it managed to take a genre that’s become a tired cliché (the college sex comedy) and a plot line that’s just as played out (guy plays gay to win the girl) and produce a fresh, keep-‘em-guessing picture. A real crowd-pleaser.
The crowd was almost exclusively male—with the 800-seat Cinerama
more than two-thirds full, I bet there were fewer than 50 women in the whole place—but even though it was a “men’s film,” there was nothing that would “put off” women viewers. In fact, it really is one of those gay films that’s fun for the whole family.