31 March 2010

Movie: Pedro

Now, I vaguely remember watching the Real World San Francisco. See, there have been so many reality shows that were generated because of it in the past 18 years that it all gets a little fuzzy. I remember Pedro, subject of this movie, and I remember Puck, who was a highly narcissistic attention-seeker who got booted from the Real World house.

So the movie tells the end of the life story of Real World San Francisco participant and gay Cuban-American HIV/AIDS activist, Pedro Zamora. I remember Pedro being the "gay" guy in the Real World house and that he was really into HIV/AIDS activist and that I got to see an occasional hand held or something like that on MTV, but I didn't really know his entire story. Now, I do.

It's an interesting movie and, if you watched the Real World San Francisco, I'd say watch this. But, if you haven't, it may not keep your attention. I cleaned my room while watching it.

30 March 2010

Livin' La Vida Loca

Ricky Martin, Grammy award winning cross-over singer and adolescent crush of this blogger, made it official today:

I am proud to say that I am a fortunate homosexual man. I am very blessed to be who I am.


19 March 2010

Movie Review: Saint of 9/11

If the Roman Catholic Church is to continue,
this man will be the first patron saint of gays.

It has taken me several years to watch this film. I was deeply suspicious of the uses of 9/11 for the myriad of causes. However, its time came in the queue and I watched it. I am very curious about the future of the Roman church, and I find the elevation of Ratzinger to be a potential moment for a snap into its opposite. But I wonder if the Roman church would survive such an enantiodromia.

And then, the story of this devout and charismatic Franciscan, who in many ways exemplified the call of St. Francis to bring the word of God directly to the people, appears on DVD to me. It is a hagiography of sorts for the well loved Father Mychal Judge. He ministered to the poor, to AIDS victims, to immigrants, to firefighters, to police and to gays. The beginning of the movie is a little slow -- but I somehow feel like the audience is directed towards the non-believers about the holiness of this man.

U.S. President Bill Clinton said "All of us who were privileged to know him, feel a special loss but we should lift his life up today as an example what has to prevail in this conflict. We cannot let the 21st century world degenerate into killing over religious and racial and political differences. We have more of us have to be like Father Mike than the people that killed him."

If you are Catholic or follow religious involvement in social movements, I recommend watching this hagiographic documentary told by the people who knew him and narrated by Sir Ian McKellen.

"God never let Mychal Judge think he was special. He left him with all the struggle problems, depressions, doubts and fears and so Mychal never knew he was a saint. Mychal thought he was one of the worst sinners."

"He wouldn't want people to burn candles in front of his statue. He'd want them to hold that light within themselves."

18 March 2010

Movie Review: Little Ashes

That's right. Before he was an immortal 128 year old vampire with the looks of a 17 year old, Robert Pattison portrayed a young, crazy and ambisexual Salvador Dalí. If you want to see him kiss another man, this would be the movie to watch, there's a lot of it. The downside to this movie is that Salvador Dalí was a megalomaniacal crazy so if its hard to stomach long periods of extreme narcissism, I'd just search images.google.com for some man on man action from Pattison.

The other main character is gay Spanish poet Federico García Lorca played by Javier Beltran who Pattison makes out with and has sex with. If you are not familiar with Spanish poetry, the Spanish Civil War, or the Franco dictatorship, I'll save you a trip to Wikipedia. The nationalistas executed him just as the Civil War broke out. I was deeply moved by the tragedy of his character, speaking of Victor Gregor's blog about being second best. Lorca led a tragic gay life known throughout the Hispanic world (including the Philippines):

Verde que te quiero verde.
Verde viento. Verdes ramas.
El barco sobre la mar
y el caballo en la montaña.
Con la sombra en la cintura
ella sueña en su baranda,
verde carne, pelo verde,
con ojos de fría plata.
Verde que te quiero verde.
Bajo la luna gitana,
las cosas le están mirando
y ella no puede mirarlas.

Like I said, Pattison's character's extreme narcissism is a little bit to stomach but its otherwise a great historical movie that was done well.

10 March 2010

The Digital Divide

In the most recent Details magazine, their 10th Anniversary issue, March 2010, I stumbled upon a fascinating article on digital gay dating from this so-called "ambigu-straight" magazine. The writer describes a gay iPhone app called "Grindr" which apparently is like a listing of available men with one of the sorting categories (in addition to picture and various measurements) is distance between iPhones. This app is functional and used even in places like Iran and Kazakhstan!

John D'Emilio described the emergence of a discrete gay identity with capitalism in his article titled Capitalism and Gay Identity. If we look at capital flows and information flows and the connection between capital and information, a fascinating question arises about alternatives to capitalism if, as Deleuze and Guattari question, that is even possible.

In the race towards over-intellectualization, I don't think that many newly minted Marxists and other anti-capitalists have adequately considered the role capitalism has played in their own lives. I know Marx says that's the contradiction.

On my own musings, when I was a kid I thought about an electronic device that would instantly allow everyone in the world to find their perfect match. Yet, as the iPhone and the internet work their way to it, I have grown to believe that even if such a device were available, it would not function as expected or anticipated.

09 March 2010

The Gay World To Come

This may likely raise an objection or two from someone, but be that as it may, I would like to direct your attention to an article in the latest Economist, 4 Mar 10, "The worldwide war on baby girls." If you decide not to read it, let me summarize. To no one's big surprise, many of the usual women hating countries of the world are having sustained gender ratio imbalances (nature sets the ratio at about 105 men to 100 women). China's One Child Policy has already developed teens-20s-30s imbalance where large swaths of men now have no possibility of marrying or even being intimate with a woman that isn't a high-rate charging prostitute.

Yes, you can see now where I'm going with this, right? (If not, look at the title of this blog)

What are your thoughts?

02 March 2010

Move Over Jinky

Meet the Fair & Lovely Obama

Famous Indian whitening cream "Fair & Lovely" brand has a new spokesperson. Move over Jinky Oda. Meet the Fair & Lovely Obama. (This was sent to me by a friend in India.)

01 March 2010

Movie Review: Shank

There is always the gamble on the coming out story.This film poster captures the charge of the entire movie quite well, but is deceptive regarding the whole thing.

This film is not really about coming out of the closet, although its there. The plot:
Though gang member Cal hides his sexuality, he secretly yearns for fellow thug Jonno (expressed in film poster no. 1). But after Cal saves Olivier, the victim of a gay-bashing by the gang, he embarks on a tender romance with the gentle student (expressed in film poster no. 2). Now the gang's manipulative leader, Nessa is out for revenge.

The whole movie can be described as machinations of the collective possession of the power complex and how one finds his individuality by breaking with it, finding love, and the seemingly necessary costs to allow those changes. A rare "coming out" movie that gets my highest approval.