Guest Post and Giveaway: Gay Films That Could Be a M/M Romance by Daisy Harris

Hi guys! Today I am very excited to welcome author Daisy Harris back to the blog. Daisy has something a bit different for us today. Instead of talking books, today we are talking gay movies!  And Daisy is here as part of her Daisy Harris Gay Film Blog Tour! Welcome Daisy!


Hello, fair readers! And thanks Jay for having me on the blog today.

For those of you who don’t know—I write books. Romance books about gay men. As such, I watch a lot of gay movies, and gay-themed television shows. I figure that if you’re here, you might enjoy some of the same gay movies I have. And this being the holidays, you might be looking for something new to watch….

So—Welcome to my Gay Movie Review blog tour. The tour calendar is at the end of the post, so you can follow along to other stops. As with most blog tours, there’s a prize involved. A randomly selected commenter will win a DVD of my favorite gay movie I’ve watched this year, Weekend, and a free book from my backlist.

On with the blog…

Some gay movies are happy, and others are sad. Some are depressing dramas, and others rollicking sex comedies. But every once in a while, I watch a gay movie and think, “Hey! I’ve read this book!”

There are certain gay movies that seem exactly like M/M romances. That’s not a criticism. But I do find it a bit distracting. Also, it makes me wonder if the book was better, which is weird because there isn’t actually a book.

But if you’re interested in watching gay movies exactly like the type of thing you read, here are a few suggestions for you:


#1: Going Down in La La Land 

First off, I’m pretty sure Amy Lane wrote this one. Okay, not really. But honestly, this one felt so romance novel-y it was distracting.

Here’s the premise… Broke and handsome young gay man, Adam (played by Matthew Ludwinski) moves to L.A. to become an actor.

You can see where this is going, right?

Well, it goes exactly where you think it’ll go. Because if you’ve read any M/M romance at all, you know that “LA” and “wants to be an actor” is code for “rent boy or porn star by chapter three.”

It happens extremely predictably. Adam may or may not work as a waiter at first (can’t remember, but it doesn’t matter), then gets offered a job stacking videotapes. Surprise! The person offering him the job is actually grooming him for more lucrative work, and work more likely to make him naked.

Adam falls for a photographer with a drug problem, starts turning tricks. Blah, blah, blah. Eventually, one of his tricks turns out to be a handsome and rich movie star who’s closeted because of his career.

They hit it off, fall in love…

I’m sure you all know what happens from here. It ends with a big old happily ever after ending, which is nice.

This movie wasn’t bad, per se. It was just so darn predictable. I could see how someone who never picked up a M/M romance might find it groundbreaking, or at least unusual. But for those of us hanging out at Joyfully Jay… Well, we might wish we were reading the Amy Lane version instead.

Still, it was a pretty fun movie. There were some porn-glimpses, which are always fun. I’m not doing ratings during this tour, but I’d give it a solid C. Maybe a C+.


#2: Longhorns

First off, I like the penis allusion in the title. The movie is about a guy, Kevin (played by the adorable Jacob Newton) and his journey to admitting to himself that he’s gay.

Set in Texas in the 80’s, Longhorns is very, very funny. At least at the start. Kevin is your average, healthy college guy, having plenty of sex. Unfortunately, when he’s screwing with his girlfriend, he’s actually thinking about guys.

And then there’s the porn time he has with his “buddy”, where they jerk off in the same bed while watching porn. Sometimes his bud even lets him work his joystick, if you catch my meaning…

Still, Kevin figures this is normal male behavior and doesn’t think anything of it, until he meets an openly gay student in his dorms, and said student totally pushes his buttons.

I’d like to pause here to say one thing— I LOVE that this movie had straight guys dabbling with gay-ish stuff without ever admitting it was gay. Half my Holsum College books (links to reviews) involve guys fooling around with other guys before they ever stop to wonder what it means about their sexuality.

It was nice to see I’m not alone in thinking that happens sometimes. ;-)

Anyhow, Kevin starts fooling around with his gay hall mate Cesar (played by Derek Villanueva), and Cesar demands he suck it up and consider that maybe he’s gay.

The middle part of the movie suffers from the same kind of saggy middle as some romance novels. Kevin goes on a trip with some of his old high school friends, and only talks to Cesar on the phone a couple times.

There’s a storm, some soul searching, some mutual masturbation… But I found it weird that Cesar was the impetus for Kevin’s change, yet you didn’t see him for a long stretch of the movie.

It’s a happily-ever-after film, which is my favorite kind. It’s not a masterpiece, but was a fun enough way to spend 75 minutes. If nothing else, watch the first half hour. That was the best part.

Oh, and Derek Villanueva won the 2011 FilmOut Audience Awards Best Actor award for his Supporting Role. So, yeah. There’s that.

B-? Maybe a B? If I were rating on Goodreads, I’d give it 3.75 stars.


#3: East Side Story

Okay, here’s the quicky synopsis…

Diego (played by René Alvarado), works at his family’s Mexican restaurant in East Los Angeles. He’s part of a big, fat Latino family, and totally in the closet. He’s in a long time sexual relationship with a hunky, but even more closeted, Real Estate agent.

The neighborhood is changing, basically getting gentrified, and a gay couple moves in down the street from his family.

Diego starts a flirtation with one of the members of the gay couple. This leads to him coming out, the gay couple breaking up, etc…

Now—here’s the main problem…

In order to validate the love-interest Wesley (played by Steve Callahan) leaving his boyfriend Jonathan, they had to make Jonathan (played by Cory Shneider) horrible.

Jonathan was racist, classist, whiny… It was really annoying. And not because racist, classist and whiny people don’t exist. They do. It’s just, if Jonathan was such a jackass, why was Welsey with him in the first place? And if Jonathan didn’t want to move away from West Hollywood to a Latino suburb, why did Wesley make him? What kind of boyfriend does that make Wesley?

I’m not a fan of romances where they paint someone’s partner as the bad guy. And I definitely don’t like romance where a character leaves a committed partner for someone else.

That’s romance 101! Hero (or heroine) shalt not break up an established relationship. Especially not if the love interest is married to or living with said established partner. It’s just not done.

That said, East Side Story was an okay viewing experience. The setting was cool. And the subplot characters were great. But none of the main characters were captivating enough to draw me in.

Still, it was an okay way to spend 88 minutes. And if you’re looking to decompress from a family dinner or from Christmas shopping, this is exactly the kind of lighthearted fare you want to stream on Netflix.


This ends today’s installment of the Daisy Harris Gay Movie Review Blog Tour. Come by Cup o Porn next Tuesday, where I’ll be discussing gay movies So Bad, They’re Good!

Oh, and be sure to comment at the end. Have you seen these films? Agree? Disagree? Have any other movies to recommend? I want to know.


Tour Schedule
  • Tuesday, November 27 — Awesome Gay Foreign Films, Volume 1 (Cup o Porn)
  • Thursday, November 29 — Good But Depressing Gay Foreign Films (Alyssa Linn Palmer)
  • Tuesday, December 4 — Soccer-Themed Gay Movies (Cup o Porn)
  • Thursday, December 6 — Totally-a-M/M-Romance-Plotline Gay Films (Joyfully Jay)
  • Tuesday, December 11 — So Bad, They’re Good Gay Films (Cup o Porn)
  • Thursday, December 13 — Awesome Foreign Gay Films, Volume 2 (Jessica Freely)
  • Tuesday, December 18 — Eating Out franchise, pre Chris Salvatore (Daisy Harris)
  • Friday, December 21 — Awesome U.S. Gay Films (Saritza Hernandez, agent)
  • Tuesday, December 25 — Eating Out Franchise, post Chris Salvatore (Daisy Harris)
  • Thursday, December 27 — Gay Adoption Films (Fiction with Friction)
  • Saturday, December 29 — Gay Films for the Holidays (Tara Lain)

Bio

Birkenstock-wearing glamour girl and mother of two by immaculate conception, Daisy Harris still isn’t sure if she writes erotica. Her romances start out innocently enough. However, her characters behave like complete sluts. Much to Miss Harris’s dismay the sex tends to get completely out of hand.

She writes about fantastical creatures and about young men getting their freak on, and she’s never missed an episode of The Walking Dead.

Want to learn more about new releases, general news and my latest inappropriate boy band crush? Sign up for my newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/b96xX

Or visit my website: www.thedaisyharris.com


Giveaway

Be sure to leave a comment for a chance to win a DVD of my favorite gay movie I’ve watched this year, Weekend, and a free book from my backlist.  The contest closes the evening of December 31st.

Comments

  1. Thanks for having me on the blog today, Jay! Hope we get some fun readers. :)

    Daisy

  2. How did I not know any of these? Good grief! Once in a while DNA Magazine will review something that looks like it falls in this genre, but I can’t remember any I’ve seen offhand…

    • These films are small enough that not too many people have seen them. I saw all three when I was really starting to dig past stuff I could find streaming on Netflix and branching out to what I could find on iTunes and Amazon. 

      It was fun to watch them, even though they werent my total keeper-shelf favorites, because I do like light romantic comedy, and all three of these fit the bill.

      I almost died laughing in the first few scenes of Longhorns. The picture of Ronald Reagan on the MC’s dorm room wall was reason enough to give this movie a watch. :)

      D

  3. Yay, Daisy… so glad you’re doing this. :)

  4. I actually saw Longhorns on Netflix. It wasn’t great, but still pretty fun. The other movies sound intriguing, but I wonder how I would ever see them. They won’t be playing at my local Cineplex.which is a shame. Thanks for the reviews!

  5. I would absolutely love the chance to win “Weekend”! I’ve purchased a few good GLBT themed films – “From Beginning to End”, “XXY” and “Watercolors” to name a few. Living here in Canada, our choices on Netflix are crap! Everything I’d like to watch is not licensed here! Do you feel my pain? ;)

  6. Oh, very curious about Weekend! :) Please enter me in the contest.

  7. Michelle (MiMi) says:

    I’ve seen East Side Story and thought the same thing! What was he doing with that guy? Count me in for the contest please. Thank you, chellebee66(at)gmail(dot)com

  8. I’ve never seen Going Down In La-La Land or Longhorns. Will add those to my list of movies to watch. =)

    My absolutely fave LGBT movie Is “It’s My Party”. I cannot watch that movie without bawling like a baby each and everytime! Of course, I can’t forget about “Priscella, Queen of the Desert”. Another movie I’ll never tire of no matter how many times I see It.

  9. I love your movie reviews. I haven’t seen any of them. I’d love to see Weekend since you like it so much. 

  10. No I haven’t seen any of these movies, but I have a favorite I like to watch at Christmas. ‘Make the Yuletide Gay.’ It’s a very cute movie about a young man trying to hide that he’s gay from his parents when he visits them for the holidays. Unexpectedly his boyfriend shows up so it gets pretty funny.

    penumbrareads(at)gmail(dot)com

  11. I’ve seen some of the ones you have talked about but now I have more to add to the list.
    Yvette
    yratpatrol@aol.com

Trackbacks

  1. [...] at Joyfully Jay, Daisy Harris is giving away a dvd of Weekend and an ebook from her backlist. Not sure when this one [...]

Leave a Comment

*