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Boys in the Band

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Product Overview

Tempers fray and true selves are revealed when a heterosexual is accidentally invited to a homosexual party.


Studio Paramount
SKU 208454014
UPC 097368878549
UPC 14 00097368878549
Format DVD
Release Date 11/11/2008
Rating Rating
Aspect Ratio
Name Nelson,Kenneth
Link Search Link
Golden Globe (1971) Kenneth Nelson, Nominee, Most Promising Newcomer - Male
ReviewSource San Francisco Chronicle
Review When it opened off-Broadway in 1968, ``Boys'' was the first mainstream play to approach homosexual life on its own terms...Mart Crowley's work was celebrated as bold and compassionate -- a breakthrough play on a taboo subject. But when the Stonewall riots of June 1969 triggered the movement toward gay self-esteem, ``The Boys in the Band'' rapidly became dated...Twenty five years after the film's release, Crowley defended ``Boys'' in ``The Celluloid Closet,'' a documentary by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, based on Vito Russo's 1981 book...``I knew a lot of people like those people,'' Crowley said of his characters. ``The self-deprecating humor was born out of a low self-esteem, from a sense of what the times told you about yourself"...At the time he wrote the play, Crowley said, ``Homosexuality was still classified as a mental illness. If you went in a gay bar you were liable to be arrested if the place was raided. There were not just attitudes but laws against one's being -- against the core of one's being"...Today, ``The Boys in the Band'' is a genuine period piece but one that still has the power to sting. In one sense it's aged surprisingly little -- the language and physical gestures of camp are largely the same -- but in the attitudes of its characters, and their self-lacerating vision of themselves, it belongs to another time. And that's a good thing.
Reviewer Edward Guthmann
ReviewRating 9
ReviewSource Movie Magazine International
Review As the first film from Hollywood to focus exclusively on gay men and their issues it doesn't hesitate to serve up frank and often time's graphic conversation. Groundbreaking at the time of it's original release almost thirty years ago, it still packs a punch...Adhering to its theatrical roots, nearly the entire movie was shot on one set, lending a feeling of intimacy to the film. That along with the skilled use of a hand held camera by cinematographer Arthur Ornitz makes us feel as though we're eavesdropping on a cocktail party where the venom flows as freely as the liquor...The action takes place in an upscale apartment in Manhattan belonging to the seemingly benevolent Michael. Michael played by Kenneth Nelson acts as ringmaster for a group of old friends who have gathered to celebrate the birthday of their pal Harold...Although at times "The Boys In The Band" can be dated and melodramatic it offers a talented group of actors delivering the first realistic and intimate portraits of the gay lifestyle on the big screen. With recent gay theme films like "In and Out" or "The Birdcage" taking a comic approach it's interesting to see a serious film about gay men before the acronym AIDS existed. Sadly, several stars of the film, Leonard Frey, Keith Prentice and Robert La Tourneaux ended up dying premature deaths due to AIDS.
Reviewer Erik Petersen
ReviewRating 9
Product Attributes
Actor Nelson,Kenneth
Label Paramount Home Video
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD
Bob Bloom, Journal and Courier ...a breakthrough film in the gay film genre...
Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress Dynamic film version of the play. Friedkin's best directing job.
Luke Y. Thompson, New Times Groundbreaking, yet entertaining too.
PopcornQ Review ...this depressing -- but always entertaining -- gay birthday party is an amusing period piece indeed.
Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall ...lively, edgy, groundbreaking...
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