DEKKOO DISPATCH 026 – ‘Animals’

Title – ‘Animals

Director – Marçal Forés

Starring – Oriol Pla, Augustus Prew, Dimitri Leonidas, Roser Tapias

Release Date – 2012

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Happy Outfest! I hope everyone who’s in sunny Los Angeles is having lots of fun and watching lots of sexy cinema at the film festival. If you’re not in LA then you should join in on the fun by watching the Outfest award-winning film ‘Animals‘ on Dekkoo which took home the Artistic Achievement prize back in 2013. I’m really psyched this film finally has arrived because it’s one of my all time favorites!! This is the first feature film of Marçal Forés who also directed ‘Everlasting Love‘ and while the two films are actually very different thematically, they’re very similar in regards to gorgeous cinematography (by Eduard Grau – ‘A Single Man’), exciting musical choices, and extremely attractive men. The soundtrack to the film in on vinyl and it’s one of my most played records. Soooo good!

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When I was growing up there was always lots of talk about having an imaginary friend. I was always sort of jealous when I’d watch movies and all these kids that were my age had this intense connection to something that I couldn’t really fathom. I wanted to be crazy too!! While I didn’t have an imaginary friend I certainly had a favorite teddy bear. I slept with it every night all the way through high school in fact (there were one or two replacements along the way). But right when I went to college he went in the closet and I don’t really miss him. In the film ‘Animals‘ though a teddy bear named Deerhoof is both Pol’s imaginary best friend and sole companion.

Deerhoof can walk and talk (in English bizarrely enough!) and talks to Pol about life, music, and comic books. Early on in the film we see Deerhoof grabbed by a dog and we get our first glimpse of how attached Pol is to his best friend and companion. But its not only the dogs that want to steal away Deerhoof, but also Pol’s brother who you can tell used to have a closer relationship before he joined the police force. Now he just acts as a demanding parental figure that wants Pol to get rid of Deerhoof and face reality. Luckily Pol has a few friends at school like Laia (who has a major crush on him) and Mark.

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Complicating Pol’s serene yet angsty life of comic books and cool Spanish punk music is Ikari, the new incredibly sexy boy in school. Pol can’t keep his eyes off him and eventually Ikari lets him inside a world that well… I don’t want to ruin the surprise, but the film definitely takes a turn! I feel like I’ve been making this movie seem normal minus the teddy bear, BUT IT’S NOT! Most people compare it to ‘Donnie Darko’ and I can’t really argue against that. It’s very surreal, goes unexpected places, and is quite serene and thought-provoking by the end. I had the privilege of being able to talk to the director right after watching it for the first time and I immediately asked him how much of an influence the short film ‘BUGCRUSH’ (which happens to be my favorite short film of alllll time) had on it and he smiled knowingly and said, ‘Quite a bit’. So if you’ve seen that then you know a little bit of the tone of the film at least.

Take a trip with Pol, Deerhoof, and the rest of the gang in the genre-bending and very queer film ‘Animals‘. On Dekkoo now!

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Watch it with:  With a few of your ‘cool’ friends.

Mix it with: Being stoned sativa-style works for this one.

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‘You Can’t Escape Lithuania’ – Now available same day as DVD!

We’ve just added Romas Zabarauskas’ latest film, ‘You Can’t Escape From Lithuania‘ to t loosely on his own experiences. It’s a stylish and supremely sexy gay road movie loosely based Zabarauskas’ own experiences.

Zabarauskas, who made a name for himself with the short film ‘Porno Melodrama’ and the feature ‘We Will Riot’ in his native Lithuania, funded this entire movie though Kickstarter…and went naked for donors to raise money (something, you’ll be happy to know, his cinematic counterpart also does in the film).

Watch ‘You Can’t Escape From Lithuania’ now!

New This Week – 7/7/17

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In 1952, Army Sergeant Bob Claunch was courted by his commanding officer Lieutenant Jack Reavley. In this self-narrated documentary, these two men recount the challenges they faced keeping their relationship intact, the issues they face growing old in a gay relationship, and their need for equal rights. Watch ‘Bob and Jack’s 52-Year Adventure’ on Dekkoo.com!

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In ‘Tonight It’s Me‘, a hot young hustler finds himself in uncharted waters when he spends the night with a client who’s far from the “johns” he’s used to servicing.

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Peter, a gay cabaret pianist, falls in love with Bill, a construction worker with intimacy issues. When Peter discovers Bill’s secret, he is determined to set him on a straight path, and when a shy young woman moves in across the hall, he puts his plan in motion, even as Bill seeks to strengthen his ties to Peter. Watch ‘Rhapsody’ on Dekkoo.com!

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As their plane slowly makes its descent, a young couple is faced with their differences through sudden pockets of turbulence. Watch ‘Turbulence’, now available on Dekkoo.com!

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Coming next week –  A stylish and supremely sexy gay road movie from acclaimed gay filmmaker Romas Zabarauskas.

New This Week – 6/30/17

Animals_NEWA Spanish teenager is forced to abandon the safety of childhood (and his walking, talking teddy bear) for the troubling world of adulthood, sexuality and responsibility in this wildly original story. Watch ‘Animals’ on Dekkoo!

Kasal_NEWIn the movie, ‘Kasal’, a gay couple, who resolve to stay together, is challenged as they attend a wedding.

df10a71b-0708-433c-ae27-27bdf8095309-72f60c33It Gets Better‘ is a gay love story between Adam, a closeted jock, and Pierre, an openly gay boy, that revolves around peer pressure, bullying and acceptance.

7b73e8ce-b39e-4370-a849-734df08a2364-1364cf12The Abominable Crime‘ is a riveting documentary that explores the religious-based culture of homophobia in Jamaica through the eyes of gay Jamaicans forced to choose between their homeland and their lives.

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Coming next week – A true, self-told story about the same lifelong love we all hope for.

DEKKOO DISPATCH 025 – ‘The Country Teacher’

Title – ‘The Country Teacher

Director – Bohdan Sláma

Starring – Pavel Liška, Zuzana Bydžovská, Ladislav Šedivý, Marek Daniel

Release Date – 2008

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It’s Wednesday!! Only 2 more workdays until 4th of July weekend! I don’t know what your plans are, but I’m venturing into the desert and drinking Tiki drinks poolside for 4 days straight. Heaven… Did everyone see the exciting news about ‘Screwed’ being picked up by Dekkoo out of Frameline?? I’ve seen it and it’s an incredibly sexy Finnish tale of first lust with a great sense of humor about it. I talked to a few people who saw it at the sold-out screening at Frameline and they said it was a super high energy screening. Get psyched!

As a city-living boy for most of my life I’ve always romanticized the life lived in the countryside. When I saw ‘The Country Teacher‘ at the Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival back in 2008 it completely fed into that romanticism and I was swept away by the golden fields of hay and the ancient practice of drawing of water from wells. Of course we’re also talking about a movie from the Czech Republic so in addition to the romantic stuff we’re also talking about insane Eastern European drunks that harass people and beat each other up. Although come to think of it that seems sorta romantic as well…

Anyways let’s talk about the characters at the heart of this emotional drama. Petr is a teacher that decides to move to the countryside from the busy city for unspecified reasons. After arriving and settling in (his landlord/boss gives him 6 months before he can’t stand the small town anymore and runs away) he falls asleep on a bed of hay and wakes up to find Marie standing over him, the woman who owns the farm he’s wandered into. She’s kind to him and invites him out to socialize with some of the villagers. He comes to realize that Marie is falling in love with him, but he’s too awkward to admit what we here at Dekkoo realize right away… he’s gay. He really likes her and feels affection for her, but he’s much more interested in her teenage son and offers his teaching skills to become more ingrained in his life.

I don’t want to go into much more detail because Petr goes through quite a journey in the film and it’s very emotional. By the end of the film you’ll absolutely fall in love with Marie who is so unbelievably kind and I fear that there aren’t many of her sort left in the world. ‘The Country Teacher‘ is a striking picture that combines the best of European art-house cinema and Queer self-discovery cinema into one wondrous picture that will leave you swooning.

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Watch it with:  By yourself or someone else that won’t talk much. It’s very meditative.

Mix it with: Coffee.

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