Monday, February 2, 2009
The Living End (1992)
Starring: Mike Dytri, Craig Gilmore, Darcy Marta
The Gist: Jon (Gilmore) and Luke (Dytri) are big gays. Not in the flaming sense of the expression but they look like sullen Calvin Klein models from the late eighties/early nineties. Major gayface on both of them. Luke has a big dangly ear-ring and a rockin’ body. Jon has a little ear stud and a tape recorder. Oh, they’re both HIV positive, and not in that fake, "triumph of the human spirit" Philadelphia kind of way. They're mad as hell and all the Denzel's in the world won't change that.
And then what happens?: Wackiness. Luke is a bit crazy and pulls guns on people, places, ATM machines, all sorts really. Jon picks him up after he pistol whips a trio of gay-bashers and takes him home. They have the sex. Then they go on a mini road-trip that the description calls a “hedonistic, dangerous journey”. I suppose it kind of is, but this is also a Gregg Araki movie. He made Mysterious Skin and even though The Living End is a very early film of his you can still feel that same angry, desperately sad tone in this one.
See it for: Daisy and Fern, the pair of murderous lesbians that give Luke a ride at the beginning and then attempt to kill him. They give details of how Fern once shoved an ice-pick up some guy’s no place. And this was funded by the American Film Institute. How bout that. The cynical side of me thinks that maybe Araki put in the application when they were afraid to shoot down anything gay-themed whatsoever. Which is great. Well played, gays.
Level of Crazy: 4. Kind of a downer.