Movie Review: "Rent"
OK, so I went and saw "Rent" this weekend. I'm man enough to admit it, and confident enough in my masculinity to not care what my fellow submariners think about it. Besides, I got to nap while SubBasket and daughter (home from college for the weekend) went and saw "Pride and Prejudice", and I knew I couldn't get out of two chick flicks in a row.
Plus, I've always enjoyed musicals, and I like seeing how they go about the difficult task of converting a stage musical to film. Overall, I think they did a pretty good job with this one. The music isn't up to the standards of "Les Mis" or "Chess", but it was pretty good. The storyline, though, is something that might take some getting used to. A movie that focuses on eight Lower East Side bohemians in 1990 (four of them AIDS-afflicted) is a film for which one might think America would not be ready.
I disagree. It's obvious to me that the U.S. is not only more accepting of what was previously considered "sexual deviancy", but actually embracing it. Exhibit #1 is this documentary I'm always seeing on TV late at night when I can't sleep and I'm channel surfing around in the Comedy Central/Spike TV area of the clicker. This documentary, sometimes showing on two or three channels at once, is a celebration of young college girls exploring their sexuality, unafraid of showing off their assets to the camera. It also focuses on their tentative explorations into the forbidden pleasures of Sapphic love, and shows what seem to be fraternity boys (clearly a conservative demographic) cheering these young ladies on as they open themselves up to the "undiscovered country" of same-sex kissing and cuddling. I'm not sure what this documentary is called, but I think PBS put it out, because they keep interrupting the "action" to encourage you to buy a tape of the show. Still, it shows that Middle America might be ready for the frank discussions of sexuality and general weirdness of "Rent".
This was obviously the Illuminati's plan, because it's clear to me that Ashcroft and his gang of cultural Nazis must have written the script. Here are eight talented young people, so full of promise, who have basically thrown their lives away for the transitory pleasures of cheap sex and heroin. The movie serves as a warning to those who might seek to emulate this lifestyle, a message that could only come from the "No Fun Allowed" Religious Right. Which is too bad, because where the movie isn't trying to preach, it seems like it tries to establish "street cred" by showing an accurate portrayal of this idyllic life, as we see the freedom-loving denizens of the neighborhood spontaneously bursting into well-choreographed song. I want to live in a place like that...
Anyway, if you like musicals, and aren't totally grossed out by two guys kissing (a lot) you could spend a worse two hours than by seeing "Rent". I'd give it three disturbingly-attractive transvestites out of five.
And does anyone know what that documentary I mentioned is called? I think it's "Girls Gone..." something.