Sunday, December 25, 2005

Breakfast on Pluto: Even More Big Gay Fun (Neil Jordan, Director)
This was one enjoyable movie, and also works as a kind of anti-Brokeback Moutain. You know how on Mythbusters, Adam Savage says, "I reject your reality, and substitute my own"? Well, this movie illustrates that idea more than anything I've seen.

Cillian Murphy plays "Kitten", an Irish boy, abandoned by his glamor-puss mother on the church door steps, and then raised in indifferent squalor by a "hairy ass" foster mother and her sour daughter. Turns out Irish Boy is kind of a fairy: he dresses up in his sister's dresses and puts on makeup while watching old Mitzi Gaynor movies on the tellie. When threatened with public exposure and humiliation he purrs, "Promise?"

Irish Boy learns to sew and grows up in trannie glory, surrounded by friends who love him (and each other) without judgement. He leaves home in search of his phantom mother, and has various adventures (including a hilarious bit in a children's amusement park featuring Brendan Gleeson in a rodent suit), depending on the kindness of strangers who are won over by his fey charms. Bad things do happen, but Kitten soars above them, weaving his own fantasy version of events where nothing "serious" ever happens. The movie is even filmed as a series of chapters, each one cheerily titled so as to reassure the viewer that nothing too horrible will happen.

In fact, horrible things do happen, but Kitten refuses to acknowledge them. Mistaken for an IRA terrorist and beaten for days, Kitten eventually charms his captors, and in a very funny chase scene, refuses to leave prison, only wanting to return to his "cheery little cell". Everyone he meets eventually falls in love with him, and we the viewers do too.

Cillian Murphy is a consistently interesting actor, and he seems to be avoiding the typecasting pit that has plagued fellow Irish actor Colin Farrell. Colin may be a scruffy bad boy favorite of american party girls everywhere, but give me Cillian any day, he's just more interesting to watch; and unlike Colin, he seems to have a bit of a filter on his acting choices. Plus he makes a damn pretty girl.

My Recommendation? It's the feel-good movie of the year! Unless you are homophobic, this movie will give you the happy feet in the end, and, especially at this time of year, there's nothing wrong with that.

Snack Foods? Pancakes, in fact, potato pancakes, 'cause it's an Irish movie. Pancakes and whiskey, yeah, that's the ticket.


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