Aug 21, 2011

[Movies] You Should Meet My Son! (2010)

You Should Meet My Son! (2010)The world of LGBT movies is one that mostly exists in direct-to-DVD releases and very limited-run film festivals in other parts of the world other than here, for some reason. Why we have such lousy LGBT movie representation in the country is a little beyond me and thus such filmmakers seemed destined to just compete against other indie filmmakers instead.

Now that certainly sounds like an idea for a future geek project - putting up our own LGBT film festival here in the country. Unless there already is one that I just never hear about. Let's write that down. *makes note to self*

Regardless, it does become a little difficult to navigate through all the different movies and figure out which ones are worth seeing and which ones don't help us in anyway. It's quite a challenge and I'm sure I together with the rest of the LGBT movie reviewing blogosphere are doing our best to slowly add to the collective knowledge of the web in terms of our experiences with such movies.

Admittedly, this one surprised me a heck of a lot. The poster / DVD cover images aren't much to go by and the movie was made on a shoestring budget. And yet beyond such constraints, there's a pretty fun story to be discovered that'll make the movie a bit more worth your time than most.

You Should Meet My Son! is a 2010 LGBT-themed comedy movie written and directed by Keith Hartman. Beyond the occasional film festival here and there, the movie is pretty much a DVD-only release that you can easily acquire online, depending on your country of residence of course.

Brian (Steve Carrico) is the kind of gay man who has chosen to stay in the closet out of fear of what it might do to his conservative Southern mother Mae (Joanne McGee). Every weekend, he visits his mother and her sister Rose (Carol Goans) to enjoy dinner together and go through yet another attempt to get hooked up with a girl at his mother's insistence. Initially the movie has him accompanied by his "roommate" Dennis (Brett Holland) but after a montage-year of dinner dates, Brian eventually shows up without his "special friend."

Eventually one of his prospective brides figures out that he's a flaming homosexual, but doesn't directly reveal this to his mother. But Mae does happen to overhear their conversation just outside the door and this gets her wondering if it could all be true. With the help of her sister Rose and an old magazine with one of those "Is He Gay" quizzes, they come to realize that Brian is gay and his recent depression is all because of Dennis' departure. Out of sheer love for her son, she decides to continue in her quest to help him find someone nice to settle down with - even if that means a man.

Thus with the help of the coincidentally queer neighbor kid Greg (Chris Nolan), the sisters take up their new matchmaking quest with pride as they dive into everything queer. Thus their crash course has them exploring the seedy side of LGBT social networking, braving the local queer bar scene and of course picking up some drag queens.

The movie is definitely designed to be funny in a campier kind of way. The over-the-top sequences position this farce as a witty, sassy piece that pokes fun on a lot of stereotypes in terms of both the LGBT community and our perceptions about conservative Southerners. But beyond the humor, the movie also tries to keep the characters grounded by basing Mae's efforts out of a genuine love for her son, regardless of his sexual orientation.

A lot of the reviews that I've read about this movie often mention the lack of a budget, but frankly that wasn't even apparent to me. Sure, it wasn't a big Hollywood blockbuster, but at the same time it didn't feel like some cheap home garage kind of film. In fact, the wit in the writing and the way the characters worked so well together on screen really helped keep the movie strong regardless of any constraints it may have experience during production.

The adventures that Mae and Rose go through result in some pretty hilarious sequences that really help the movie shine. Whether it's the two of them using a computer for the first time to hook a guy for Brian or Mae trying to get to know a stripper better while he's in the middle of his routine, the end result is some great comedy that doesn't resort to too much slapstick to work.

Admittedly, the movie has a lot of tropey moments that we could have done without. The drag queens had to have their mandatory makeover sequence, which really turned out worse than how she began. And there was the awkward dinner at the end that felt more punishing that humorously effective as they had clearly hoped. Still, the rest of the movie worked pretty well and that helped make up for the slightly weaker ending.

You Should Meet My Son! is the kind of quaint, campy movie that knows how to manage a farce decently without getting ridiculous. It certainly brightened my day after watching it and I'm sure you'll enjoy as well. Thus the movie gets 4 somewhat expected drag queen moments out of a possible 5.

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  1. Hi Tobie and Rocky! Can I ask a favor? Mag-guest naman kayo sa blog namin hehe. One article lang :)

  2. Hi Elmer,

    I'm sure we'd love to contribute - just give us a better idea of what you're looking for. I'll probably get in touch with you directly over email or via Facebook.