Tag Archives: gay stuff

THE GAY BED & BREAKFAST OF TERROR

gb&bot 2007/18/109m

“Some things should stay in the closet!”

Director/Writer: Jaymes Thompson / Cast: Mari Marks, Michael Soldier, Georgia Jean, Robert Borzych, Hilary Schwartz, Vinny Markus, Shannon Lee, Denise Heller, Derek Long, Allie Rivenbark, James Tolins, Lisa Block-Wieser, Jim Polivka, Noah Naylor.

Body Count: 12

Dire-logue: “You will no longer yearn for the engorged penis of a well-muscled man in uniform! From this point on you will embrace the light of God and dream of the sugar-sweet Holy vaginal walls of your soon-to-be wife!”

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A lot of gay men like slasher flicks, they provide a kind of sanctuary where the misfit final girl (who is normally sexually repressed and ‘outside’ of the microcosm of society that she exists in) outlives the nasty cheerleaders and fag-hating jocks to best the killer and save the day.

This said, gay characters have always been few and far between, normally wasted with prejudice or revealed to be the killer of the ‘normal’ heterosexual teens, overtly camp, in drag or completely ignored altogether. Gay-centric slasher films are almost as rare: Make A Wish pandered to fantasies around lesbianism and set it to a Friday the 13th-lite baseline, Hellbent got it mostly right by playing it, ahem, “straight” and going for the octane-over-aesthetics route and now to join the ranks is a kind of mash-up of the two, it’s The Gay Bed & Breakfast of Terror

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After a cabaret song about watching out for straight people adorns the credits, several gay couples drive up to the Sahara Salvation, having left it too late to book accommodation for a gay festival. The Sahara is run by mum/daughter oddball duo Helen and Luella, and the former wants to convert a gay fella from his “Satanic ways” to be a husband to oppressed-lez Luella. There’s also Manfred; a boy-slug hybrid who lives in a cage and likes to eat sinners.

The guests include an arty lesbian couple, a drag queen and his leather-daddy BF (played by director Thompson), an older guy and his buffed boy-toy, a couple of ‘normal’ gay guys and their fag-hag and a guitar-strumming hippie lesbian. Some of them soon fall victim to Helen’s Biblical-spouting and her crucifix-shaped dagger or Manfred’s green fangs. Then there’s partner swapping, sex, flashbacks to Helen and Luella’s homicidal-prompting experiences and a bloody finale of camp carnage.

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So it’s cheap and cheery, similar to But I’m A Cheerleader in its tone and execution (‘scuse the pun) with some funny lines and mannerisms: Helen screams her anti-gay diatribe at an en-dragged intended victim, to which he responds “if God hates us so much then why did he make all the beautiful people gay!!!!” There’s a hidden shrine to Reagan and Bush, a merry lesbian nun, hot players all around and a sense that those involved were having a great time.

As entertaining as I found The Gay B&B of Terror to be, it’d be unfair to ignore its less charming elements. Gay films still appear to lean towards stereotypical characters all too easily and there are an excess of in-jokes that those unfamiliar with gay culture will be bamboozled by. This is a fun party flick, if not a little overlong, but for an audience outside of the intended demographic, it’ll sink harder than a Bible verse in a pride march.

And who’s that woman at the beginning…?

Scream Queens

HELLBENT

3.5 Stars  2004/15/81m

“When the night belongs to the devil, the party goes to hell.”

Director/Writer: Paul Etheredge-Ouzts / Cast: Dylan Fergus, Bryan Kirkwood, Andrew Levitas, Matt Phillips, Samuel Phillips, Hank Harris.

Body Count: 5

Dire-logue: “Wouldnt you wanna kill us? C’mon, we’re fucking fabulous!”


Gay men seem to really like slasher flicks. Weird huh? It’s true! Seriously. While we’re known for being ‘vanguards of all that’s camp’, most folk would equate slice n’ dice teen horror with its chiefly adolescent heterosexual male target audience, hence all the tits n’ stuff.

But think about it for a mo (har-de-har-har) and you might see why. Final Girls are intrinsic to the genre, strong girls who ‘don’t belong’ in the norms of society. Often, she’s the part-outsider, a factor which aids her in seeing and subduing the maniac who’s been laying her dim-witted friends to waste while they screw each other in the woods or the abandoned cabin.

P’haps we benders identify with her. Or maybe the killer? He’s an outsider too and he likes to rid the world of stereotypical teens who, we can arguably assume, are so self-absorbed that they’re everything-phobic. Jocks, bitchy cheerleaders, not historical Friends of Friends of Dorothy in the slasher realm.

Endless rantable theories aside, Hellbent is one of two existing queer slasher flicks around. The other one is lez-fest Make a Wish, in which girl-lovin’ girls go camping, get laid, get knocked off. Hellbent is a slicker affair, pulling focus on a quartet of Californian goodtime boys, out to party at a Halloween carnival, only to be stalked by a buffed up maniac, dressed as the devil and equipped with a sickle that most would think was a harmless costume shop toy…

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Things begin with the requisite double murder of shagging couple…in car…parked by the woods…after dark. But, of course, here it’s two handsome guys who’re caught doing naughty things.

We meet our Final Boy, John Barrowman-alike Eddie, an all-round nice guy working for the cops, possibly hoping to be one. He’s held back for a reason that later becomes cringingly evident in a scenario never before seen in a slasher pic! He and his three buddies; pill-popping sex addict Chaz (cowboy-gay), his younger brother Joey, the shy newcomer to things (S&M gay), and Drag Queen for-the-night party dude Tobey (uh…Drag Queen gay). They fill archetypal victim and gay roles, neither as responsible nor watchful as Eddie.

Once the carnival gets swingin’, the killer turns up, having previously spied the quartet at the site of his previous slaying when they stop for a looky-loo. Meanwhile, Eddie encounters James Dean-wannabe biker boy Jake, tempting and sexy, just what Eddie needs. Now, the killer is no puritanical Reverend or member of the Phelps church, he’s a gym-pumped Adonis in a horned Devil mask who appears in the shadows, in the dimness of the forest or the strobe lights across the dance floor. Sticking to the genre rules like flypaper, Eddie is attacked by the killer but is too late to save his friends, who are either off their heads on pills or simply off their heads. Period.

The executions are dripping with claret, albeit computer generated grue, they’re still quite brutal. But then if you’re going to collect gay-heads then it’s not going to be something Kim & Aggie would approve of when it comes to mess-management. Unless you’re Dexter.

Things are capped off when the killer visits Eddie’s home to crash his intended kinky consummation with Jake – featuring handcuffs! Severed heads fall out of cupboards, sickle blades pierce flimsy apartment doors. There’s a whole lot of Halloween to it.

As the gay loveletter to John Carpenter’s flick, Hellbent is effective and fun but lacking in queer-soul that gives homo dramas like The Broken Hearts Club depth, like helmer/scribe Etheredge-Ouzts was too busy trying to make the film blend in with its straight bretheren to bother making sure it was wearing its Pride flag on its sleeveless muscle shirt. It’s a thin line so I may as well perch on the fence over the issue and be thankful there were no morality-play allusions. I’m shutting the hell(bent) up now.

Blurbs-of-interest: Andrew Levitas (Chaz) played Provoloney in Psycho Beach Party. Executive producer Joseph Wolf (who died in 2005) was also involved in the productions of Halloween II, Hell Night, Fade to Black and A Nightmare on Elm Street.

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