Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Milk Interviews


I know it's been ages since David and I have posted but we warned you that this wasn't going to be an every day kinda thing and as you've seen, sometimes not even an every month kinda thing. We're just up to our ears in movies, movies, movies. This is the time of year that tons of great stuff finally, finally hits theatres or arrives in the form of a screener by Fed Ex and so instead of writing here, we're watching Up There.

But I've felt a little guilty about not blogging and since I had the pleasure of talking with everybody from Milk (with the vivid exception of Mr. Penn), I thought I throw up this little post with a shout out to all the interviews - they're posted at my site, for your reading enjoyment.

David and I actually do have another podcast coming soon in which we discuss one of our favorite holiday movies so check back in soon -- and we promise to do so as well. Until then,

Sweet Cinematic Dreams,


Monday, October 6, 2008

The Mother of Tears/Giallo Movies - Podcast #6


Fall is finally in the air and the Halloween season has officially kicked off with the release on DVD of The Mother of Tears, Dario Argento's conclusion to his "three mothers" witches trilogy. Argento, the acknowledged father of the "giallo" film (an Italian term for gory horror movies though David explains this much more completely in the podcast) made his name with the 1977 classic of the horror genre Suspiria. I really dug the over the top Mother of Tears when it hit the theatres last summer (see my insightful review HERE) and in this next little podcast David and I discuss the movie, the giallo genre, Suspiria, David's favorite giallo The Driver's Seat (which stars none other than Elizabeth Taylor) and much else. We also talked about The Driver's Seat during our discussion of camp films which you can see in one of our YouTube Segments. Click HERE to see that (and yes it's possible for a film to be giallo and camp - more than possible in fact.)

Get set for one of our rambling though never less than fascinating film packed discussions. We'll be back shortly (we always promise that I know but we're just too busy to blog every ten seconds). Halloween film recommendations coming, more podcasts, ad naseum.

Until then...make room for G-I-A-L-L-O with our latest PODCAST recorded just for your listening pleasure.

Sweet Cinematic Dreams,

Ricky & David

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ricky Discusses "The Women" On TV


I didn't think Diane English's remake of The Women, one of the worst reviewed films of the year was all that bad - no really. Perhaps it's because I knew in advance there was NO WAY any remake could hold a candle to Our Lady of the Classics. It's got to rank right next to All About Eve and perhaps Valley of the Dolls as one of the penultimate classics for gay men of a certain age. I say "certain age" because I'm not sure what you gay youngsters think of the original or if it's even on your radar screen.

I also liked that English reshaped the material into the familiar format of a sisterhood picture - one not as full of bitchery or as fun to be sure - but this new direction helped distinguish this remake from the original (just as in 1956's remake, The Opposite Sex, in which the men and musical numbers were featured). It's also kinda fun to look at the Rotten Tomatoes ratings and see that very few critics felt as I did, though I am happy to report, Roger Ebert was one of them (maybe we sent good vibes to one another as we watched in the same packed screening room?).

I was invited to discuss my take on the film on a local news program, "Chicago Tonight," and here's the YouTube video for your viewing pleasure:

For my full written review, click HERE.

And here's one more bonus: I also had the opportunity to chat with the forthright and funny Annette Bening about the film and a lot of other stuff for a recent piece for the Chicago Tribune. As is usually the case, much of the material got left out of the print edition so click HERE to read the complete interview.

David and I will return shortly with yet another podcast - we've got some more great but obscure films to recommend. Until then...

Sweet Cinematic Dreams,

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Tearoom - Podcast #5


While away on vacation Ricky spots a public restroom which reminds him of a fascinating little film he recently reviewed by queer underground filmmaker and historian William E. Jones. The movie, which Jones labels a "document" is called Tearoom and not surprisingly, David, who is also something of a historian, had plenty to say about it. A typical fascinating Movie Queens discussion ensues for you to enjoy by clicking


Until next time.

Sweet Cinematic Dreams,

Ricky and David

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Diary of a Mad Housewife & Tower of Evil

Recently I had the very good fortune of being a guest at the home of a pair of Movie Queens that gave this old Movie Queen a run for his cine-fanatic money - in fact, they did outrun me - no matter how long I chased them around the coffee table. Though, I have to give myself props - I didn't spill a drop of my cocktail despite some of the tight turns in their well appointed living room.


My presence was requested to join in a viewing of yet another movie in the VERY long list of movies that raises the question, "If 'Meatballs 4' can be on DVD, why can't this???"

Hilarious and brutal- "Diary of a Mad Housewife" is a study in masochism set in the urban nightmare that was late sixties/early seventies New York - back in the days when it teetered on the brink of bankruptcy - back before the Disneyfication of Times Square. Back when it was still a little scary. I loved the shot of the two rats Tina (Carrie Snodgress) stumbles upon early in the film. In one shot, director Frank Perry perfectly captured the City itself and the general mood of our nation at that time.

Did the rats somehow represent Tina's husband Jonathan (Richard Benjamin) and her lover (Frank Langella)?

Well, why not?

Amazing editing by Sidney Katz that include some brilliant jump cuts - stunning sound design - a great overall look and top-notch acting. Richard Benjamin might be overplaying the tiniest bit- but, then again, there are a lot of the people in the film who sort of declaim their lines in a near hysterical - nearly shouting out to the cheap seats tone. The scene with the baby sitter asking Jonathan to sue the city for her as she raises her skirts to crotch level is everything this movie is all at once- disturbing, unsettling, annoying and weirdly mysterious.

See it however you can and then pine for the beautifully transferred DVD sometime in the future.

In the meantime, you might want to check out a DVD that I fell asleep to late last night. "Tower of Evil" was released in 1972 and is a prime example of that blend of supernatural horror and titillation... and I do mean breastitude. Some people get killed on a mysterious abandoned island with a decrepit lighthouse. The ladies mostly walk around with bare breasts when they are not sewn into swinging late sixties early seventies hipster get-ups - the rust colored velvet jumpsuit with all those white zippers is 1,000 times greater than anything you might see on any season of "Project Runway" (especially this season). The guys do the same in an array of turtlenecks, tight tees and hip hugging crotch enhancing trousers. There are coy junk obscuring camera tricks (think Austin Powers here) - but, in consolation there are a fair number ass shots that almost make up for the teasing.

The plot isn't worth paying too much attention to- but, there are several key moments that really floated my boat:

1. The first shot of the hypnotizing light boxes in the full light of day.
2. A sequence that I think just might be the longest scream sequence in all of cinema history clocking in at a full minute. And ending with a panicked flurry of, "KILL!! BLOOD!!!"
3. When the guys go off to investigate they tell the women to stay behind and, "If anything happens, just scream." People usually do when they're impaled, thrown off lighthouses or chased by hideous malformed creatures.

There's some not-very-scary ancient mumbo jumbo devil worship crap (with some kind of storky looking 'golden' idol that looks to me to be flipping off its worshipers) to keep the plot in motion- but, over all this is is more of a cavalcade of terrible acting, fine fashion and excellent shoe foley.

Fall asleep to it. I did and woke up just in time for the explosive, flaming finish.

~ David

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Film Finds - Podcast #4


David eagerly shares with Ricky his latest movie find, a gay in all but name forgotten gem called The Flaming Urge. Meanwhile, Ricky is still pixilated by his recent chat with Debra Winger and what he thinks is one of her best films, the little seen Mike's Murder which is shot through with gay characters and situations. Both D&R opine enthuastically in this podcast, expound on a few of their other hard to find favorites (like David's other recent obscure fave, The Driver's Seat for example) and wrap with some chat about Debra Winger's offbeat career. David's selection, luckily, is available on DVD, Ricky's, not yet -though a vhs is out there to be had for the discerning cinematic treasure hunter.

Brideshead Revisited


I had a great time chatting with Matthew Goode, the star of Brideshead Revisited (seen above on the right as Charles Ryder in a tender moment with Ben Whishaw who plays the fey Sebastian). He's also in the forthcoming comic book epic Watchmen (which we discussed). Here's a link to my extended interview:


I also loved Brideshead (which has lots of gay material) and wanted to post a link to my extended review. It's a nice change of pace from the summer blockbuster stuff.


Sweet Cinematic Dreams,

Friday, July 25, 2008

Debra Winger - Podcast #3


About 12 years ago Debra Winger, one of Hollywood's most versatile and respected actresses, walked away from the business of movies (but not, she is quick to point out, from acting). Her meteoric rise at the beginning of the 1980s began with her portrayal of the sexually aggressive Sissy (who rode the mechanical bull to fame) in Urban Cowboy and continued with unforgettable roles in Terms of Endearment, An Officer and a Gentlemen, Cannery Row, Black Widow, The Sheltering Sky, Shadowlands, and my personal favorite, the indie mystery Mike's Murder. Now she's written a fascinating book, "Undiscovered," a far from typical movie star autobiography. It's a small volume that includes everything from her thoughts on raising her sons, plastic surgery, the simple pleasure to be found in gardening, the loss of her mother, and here and there, even a few tantalizing memories of her film career. The reflective little book reveals that Winger is also a talented writer.

I recently had the chance to talk with her and in this excerpt from my interview we touch on a wide variety of subjects - her book cover reminding me of the iconic photograph of Georgia O'Keeffe (on the back of her book of paintings), the late singer/songwriter Laura Nyro, her new movie Rachel Getting Married in which she co-stars with Anne Hathaway, her reaction to being the subject of the coolest trivia question of all time (it has to do with E.T.), and a bit about Terms of Endearment and Mike's Murder.

Throughout Winger laughs big and gets serious when the conversation veers in that direction. We had a great time talking. Hope that you enjoy this excerpt.

Here's the link to Amazon to order the book:

David has been busy working on his latest theatrical endeavor so I've been holding down the screening room at Movie Queen Manor as of late but he returns in our next podcast. Until then...
Sweet Cinematic Dreams,

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Loved Him, Liked Her

The Dark Knight and Mamma Mia! are here as if you didn't know and so, at last, are my extended reviews. Here's the link to read my dearthless, cinematic poetry:

Ricky's Dark Knight-Mamma Mia! reviews

Everything quiet for the moment here at Movie Queen Manor. Coming Attractions: an interview podcast with Debra Winger coming this week, along with two obscure new film recommendations from David and myself.

Sweet cinematic dreams,

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Coming Soon - The Dark Knight-Mamma Mia!


Two of this summer's queerest movies (and I mean "queer" as in "mega gay") are almost here and I've seen both of them - The Dark Knight and Mamma Mia! this week. I'm dying to tell you what I thought but instead I'm going to be a nice little film critic and respect the studio embargos and withhold my reviews until next week. But I will say this - these two are chock full of gay subtext (the latter actually quite overt) and are going to make a lot of hearts beat a lot faster. Christian shirtless! Heath acting! Meryl singing! That cute guy from The History Boys shirtless in MM! (in virtually every scene). Gay audiences should just get in line right now and if you really want to experience The Dark Knight in all its explosive glory, get thee to an I-Max. You can read all about it next week at my Knight at the Movies site and David and I might talk about these in an upcoming podcast as well. Until then...

Sweet Cinematic Dreams,

Monday, July 7, 2008

Gigolo Movies - Podcast #2


David and Ricky discuss one of cinema's most homoerotic genres: the gigolo movie. Everything from The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone to The Walker are discussed. David describes what sounds like a camp gigolo movie masterpiece, Love Has Many Faces, a Lana Turner picture from 1965 in which she is romanced by TWO gigolos - Hugh O'Brien and Cliff Robertson. Plus D&R chat about booze, shock treatments, Richard Gere's bush in American Gigolo, David's distaste for Breakfast at Tiffany's - so extreme that he uses one of his big words ("ajeda") to describe his reaction and a lot more. 14 minutes of Movie Queen insight in fact.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Our First Podcast


The Grim Viewer has once again brought news of the passing of two movie related personalities - Cyd Charisse and Dodie Goodman. From different parts of Movie Queen Manor Ricky and David discuss these two ladies and then in a segue that must be heard to be believed, get into how the sound effects are the same in every Universal Studios movie and TV show. David uses one of his favorite phrases to describe a movie, "Rife with mediocrity" to Ricky's delight. Plus mentions of Audrey Hepburn, Hugh O'Brien, Harvey Korman, Debra Lee Scott, the fall of the Twin Towers on 9/11, Berry Berenson, Anthony Perkins and more. More podcasts will follow along with more video segments and writings.

Our First Podcast - Cyd & Dodie

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Movie Queens Teaser #1

Ah what memories! Here's the original Movie Queens Teaser #1 that we released to the world to create a bit of buzz about all the doings at Movie Queen Manor. We thought we post it here as well. Other MQ segments are forthcoming.

Sweet Cinema Dreams,

Ricky and David

Monday, June 16, 2008

Ricky and David photos

Movie Queens Blog Now Online!

We're here! We're queer! And we're talking movies from a queer perspective!

What can you expect to find at this blog?

Scintillating, insightful commentary about movies, new and old, always from a queer perspective. The first peek at our minisodes with topics ranging from camp films to chick flicks (and much more), recommendations and musings from our regular visitors to Movie Queen Manor (Arlando, Joan Crawford #77, Karin the Movie Librar'n, the Grim Viewer, Sister Cinematica, Carol Drive Ann, et al). You'll also find occasional posts about whatever happens to strike our creative fancy.

What you won't find here:

Anything along the line of, "I brushed my teeth today and noticed that I am out of toothpaste so I showered, dressed, fed Big Debbie and Zoe, had a light breakfast (I had toast which I burned - darn!) and then got into my car (note to self: have radiator checked before the intense heat of summer is really here!), and then drove to Target to get some replacement toothpaste. While I was shopping for the toothpaste (I use Sensodyne because my teeth are just sooo sensitive to hot and cold drinks, especially icy Dr. Pepper) I noticed that they were having a sale on bath towels. Well I have been needing some new bath towels ever since that night..."

Bla bla bla

That personal junk bores us to tears. The only reason we wanted to start a blog was to create an interactive place between ourselves and our fellow Movie Queens. Feel free to join in the discussion and get set for some terrific movie recommendations.

Sweet Cinema Dreams,

Ricky and David
the Movie Queens