‘Gods And Monsters’ arrives on Dekkoo tomorrow, April 3 2018!
Title – ‘Fort Buchanan‘
Director – Benjamin Crotty
Starring – Andy Gillet, David Baïot, Iliana Zabeth, Mati Diop
Release Date – 2014
Heya! I hope you got a chance this past weekend to catch our newest Dekkoo exclusive film ‘Screwed’, but if you didn’t it’s still there calling out to you from the sun-drenched shores of Finland. And if you did watch it then I’ve got a deep gem from our collection that I think you’ll have some fun with…
‘Fort Buchanan‘ is the name of this unique piece of cinema hailing from an American director now living in France. As with someone that’s been immersing themselves in French life he decided to shoot the film in French and yet populate the movie with a decidedly American attitude and aesthetic including quite a bit of country music. I watched this last night with a friend and we were definitely taken aback by how unique the film is (especially once you’re past the initial 15 minute introductory mark). What starts as an ordinary relationship drama about a husband yearning for his husband who’s away at war develops into a layered film about fidelity, age, PTSD, and the acceptance of death.
The film contains four sections each taking place within the four seasons. Most of it takes place at a residence compound of sorts – the titular Fort Buchanan. Roger (our main character for most of the film which by the way only runs at one hour which is the perfect length for a slightly strange movie such as this one) lives at Fort Buchanan with his daughter Roxy along with many other army wives. He misses his husband Frank who’s away fighting in Djibouti and tries to keep his mind on staying in shape, reading, and wearing wild flashy jackets. The other army wives try and console him and encourage him to pursue ‘play dates’. Shocked at this new piece of information he digs deeper and finds out that all of the army wives occasionally sleep with women and so we begin to realize that their next target is Roger’s daughter. Chasing sex is most of what takes place in ‘Spring’.
Fast-forward to ‘Summer’ and we’ve traveled to Djibouti (in a fantastic CGI-ish transition that I went crazy over!) where we finally get to meet Frank and witness the interactions between the two. Meanwhile Roxy is exploring the local flavors and testing out her budding sexuality on the dance floor. Past this point I don’t want to say much more about the plot, but my advice is to go with the flow when it comes to the random character that shows up in ‘Fall’. It’s confusing at first, but he’s introduced for a reason to be sure. Oh I also need to be sure to let you know it’s shot in 16mm which adds to the hazy yet gorgeous nature of the film. It definitely feels like it was shot in the 80s or early 90s. Go check it out!!
Watch it with: A friend who enjoys an experimental adventure.
Mix it with: A light refreshing white wine.
Seventeen-year-old Miku is trying to come to terms with his sexuality and find his place in the world. After his parents find out he threw a wild party while they were away, he is to spend the summer with them at their cottage. A flirtation soon develops with Elias, the boy next door. As they spend the summer escaping their dysfunctional families, a relationship quickly blossoms. But they soon realize that love is not as easy as it seems. ‘Screwed’ is available now, exclusively on Dekkoo.com – one month before DVD!
An ensemble comedy about the intersecting loves, lies and indiscretions of three couples in Brooklyn. Watch ‘Other People’s People’ on Dekkoo.com!
In the drama ‘Hate Crime’, A gay couple suddenly encounter intolerance and hostility at the hands of their new neighbor, the son of a fundamentalist preacher.
Coming next week: In this 90’s talk show an American fitness instructor, actor, and comedian tried to make dream come true!
Title – ‘Wild Reeds‘
Director – André Téchiné
Starring – Élodie Bouchez, Gaël Morel, Stéphane Rideau, Frédéric Gorny
Release Date – 1994
Ah the French… While we’re partying it up and watching TV they’re contemplating life and reading philosophy – or at least that’s what they want us to think! Either way the French make some great movies especially dealing with teenage angst which is the subject of today’s dispatch! Enter the world of André Téchiné’s ‘Wild Reeds‘ (Les Roseaux Sauvages). It was hailed as an instant classic when it came out in France in ’94 and even beat out ‘Queen Margot’ (by Patrice Chéreau [‘L’homme Blesse‘]) for the César award (the equivalent of our Oscar). We’re showcasing a new HD Restoration that will blow your socks off!
‘Wild Reeds‘ tells the story of four teenagers making the transition from childhood in the era of the late days of the Algerian War which took place from 1954-1962. The movie focuses the most on Francois who’s discovering his budding attraction to men. Conveniently he becomes friends with the sexy Serge who is open to ‘experimenting’ with Francois, but nothing more beyond that. Of course that frustrates Francois who feels a real attraction to Serge to which he confides in his best friend Maite, the daughter of their teacher with communist leanings (Madame Alvarez). The film starts with a joyous wedding with Serge’s older brother confiding in Alvarez that he’s heard communists might be able to smuggle him out of the war. When she refuses to help he’s forced to head back to the war where he tragically dies. This sets in motion a series of events that bring the 3 adolescents together to figure out the next steps their life will take.
Senses of Cinema had this to say about the title of the film:
The title Wild Reeds (Les roseaux sauvages) echoes a poetic fable by Jean de La Fontaine (1621-1695): “The Oak and the Reed”. Boasting of his strength, the proud oak tree offers to shelter the frail reed. But the reed rejects the oak and, when a storm blows, the reed bends with the wind and survives, while the oak is torn up by its roots. In concert with this, all of Wild Reeds’ adolescent characters need to learn to bend from their initial, inflexible positions and accept the ambiguities inherent in adulthood.
There are so many reasons to watch this film!! Besides the fact that you’ll get to witness the birth of the modern French coming-of-age film there’s a wealth of talent involved in this film that went on to make lots more amazing movies (a bunch of which you’ve probably seen!).
André Téchiné – The director of countless amazing French films. He’s directed some of the best queer films of all time including ‘Being 17’ and ‘The Witnesses’.
Gaël Morel – The lead of ‘Wild Reeds‘ attained much critical acclaim for his portrayal of Francois, but his passion rested in being behind the camera and just two years later directed the popular film ‘Full Speed’ in which he cast his co-star from ‘Wild Reeds’ Stéphane Rideau! He also directed the steamy gay thriller ‘Our Paradise’.
Stéphane Rideau – Stéphane went on to become a prolific actor in his own right starring in the subversive comedy ‘Sitcom’ by Francois Ozon and the popular gay romance movie ‘Come Undone’ by Sebastian Lifshitz.
Jacques Nolot – A very famous French actor, he later went on to write and direct the classic queer films ‘Porn Theatre’ and ‘Before I Forget’.
Watch it with: With your French film-loving friends.
Mix it with: A French red wine of course!
Title – ‘Screwed’
Director – Nils-Erik Ekblom
Starring – Mikko Kauppila, Valtteri Lehtinen, Sanna Majuri, Sami Huhtala
Release Date – 2017
Next week we’re bringing you a gay title direct from the biggest gay film festivals right into your living rooms! On February 15th get ready to be ‘Screwed’…
If the film sounds familiar that’s because right after Frameline (the oldest queer film festival in the world!) we here at Dekkoo made headlines by acquiring the film just for all of you right out of the jam-packed world premiere. We were so impressed by this audacious and sexy coming-of-age film that we just had to immediately grab it and make sure you all were the first to see it. That’s why it will be exclusively available on Dekkoo for a whole month before it hits DVD.
‘Screwed’ comes to us from the mind of Nils-Erik Ekblom – a filmmaker who decided to explore the life of a fairly normal gay teenager in Finland and what happens when he comes face to face with desires he decides he doesn’t want to run from. In interviews Nils has explained that he feels gay people aren’t portrayed authentically in Finnish cinema and that for years they’ve been the butt of jokes. He desired to create an accurate portrait of queer life here and now in Finnish culture. Indeed if you look up Finnish gay films you won’t find much of anything sadly. Now we know why ‘Tom of Finland’ wanted to come to California 🙂
Alright enough of the back-story! Let’s talk about the boys! Meet our cute main character – 17-year-old Miku. Jesus that name is adorable… Miku’s life is very static – you can absolutely tell something needs to change and this is the year that he takes some chances in life. A good way to start is by throwing a house party and losing his virginity his weird older brothers advises him. Thus Miku throws said party and thus his parent’s house nearly gets demolished in the teenage debauchery that ensues. Of course it’s bad enough to feel the wrath of his parents in general, but it’s even worse because they go on summer vacation immediately afterwards and he’s stuck in a small cabin with them!
Luckily there’s a surprise just down the river bend… No I’m not kidding. Literally a hot next door neighbor named Elias rows down the river and comes to introduce himself to Miku’s family. Once Elias sees Miku he’s very taken whereas Miku looks like he wants to run away as far as possible from the feelings that are coursing through him. It’s like watching someone in fight-or-flight mode. After the two finally start talking and taking little adventures in the countryside together it’s clear that they’re both in for a large dose of first love – with all the wonderful earth-shaking feelings it can produce. Of course ‘Screwed’ doesn’t just focus on the gay angle of life, it also rounds it out with sibling trouble, rocky marriages, and general family drama.
We’re incredibly thrilled to bring you this sexy, amazingly gorgeous film directly to you first before anyone else. We hope you love it as much as us!
Watch it with: With lots of friends! Pack ’em in!
Mix it with: White wine.
Title – ‘L’Homme Blessé‘
Director – Patrice Chéreau
Starring – Jean-Hugues Anglade, Vittorio Mezzogiorno, Roland Bertin, Claude Berri
Release Date – 1983
RARE CINEMA ALERT!! RARE CINEMA ALERT!!
Wow I can’t believe the boys at Dekkoo managed to pull this one off. ‘L’Homme Blessé‘ aka ‘The Wounded Man’ is an extremely rare piece of older queer cinema that has been completely unavailable in the U.S. besides a VHS from ’97! And it’s a crying shame because this is a bonkers gay-as-hell film from one of France’s most famous directors; Patrice Chéreau. While famous in France for his theatrical productions, he was famous abroad for movies like Palme D’or Winner ‘Queen Margot’, ‘Intimacy’, and ‘His Brother’.
‘L’Homme Blessé‘ was made in 1983 by Chéreau after working on a script for 6 years with his writing partner Hervé Guibert. In it the pair explore a young man’s awakening to intense homosexual desires that blossom into masochismic longings for one man in particular – Jean – an enigmatic hustler who prowls train stations looking for weak homosexuals he can bully into giving up their wallets. Yup folks – this is not a feel good movie where you’ll feel safe and secure. It doesn’t support the illusion that being gay is all rainbows and unicorns. But I like that sometimes! It’s important to realize how tough it used to be back in the day to be queer (and honestly that still holds in many places). Plus bisexual rough trade is definitely kinda hot sometimes 😉
Jean-Hughes Anglade (before making his star turning role in ‘Betty Blue’) plays the shy young Henri who visits the train station with his family. While there we begin to see his first tries at ‘cruising’ – obviously something that train station must be very well known for. In a bathroom he stares wide-eyed at Jean – a spectacularly handsome rugged man in his 30s and after re-entering the bathroom finds Jean mugging someone. While trying to run away from the situation Jean catches him and instead of beating him up begins wildly caressing him and urging Henri to help him finish mugging his victim. It’s one of the sexiest criminal queer scenes that exists.
Afterwards Henri becomes something akin to a slave to Jean. He follows him around, does his bidding, and becomes increasingly annoyed at Jean’s indifference towards him. Of course Jean isn’t completely gay and has a wife which complicates things to be sure. His wife tolerates Jean’s bisexual leanings and criminal lifestyle, but isn’t happy about it. The closest comparison I can draw to this film that exists in the Dekkoo catalog would be ‘Fogi is a Bastard‘. It shares a lot of ideas such as the corruption of innocence, dependency issues, and crime begetting crime. But I think Chéreau’s film delves a little deeper into the darkness of the human soul which I think is why the film divides so many audiences.
Besides being able to brag to your friends that you saw one of the most hard-to-find pieces of queer cinema you’ll also experience one of the most heartbreaking, outrageous, and melancholic films in Patrice Chéreau’s filmography. Cruise it tonight!
Watch it with: By yourself or with a dark lover.
Mix it with: French wine.