Olyphant, Zach Braff, Dean Cain, Andrew
Keegan, Nia Long, John Mahoney, Mary
McCormack, Matt McGrath, Billy Porter,
Justin Theroux, Ben Weber
out of 5
BROKEN HEARTS CLUB has arrived in theaters
with a quite a splash this fall, being
billed as a sort of non-gay gay movie.
By this is meant that the plot doesn't
focus on the movie-of-the-week themes
of HIV/AIDS, homophobia, or coming-out
trauma. Minorities everywhere can surely
empathize with this "first," having known
the day when movies about minorities were
almost certain to be about race relations
and "the struggle." You may have seen
this postcard, which mocks the sexathon
stereotype of gays and lesbians: "SEE
the decadent gay lifestyle! They go to
the movies! They shop for groceries! They
get their oil changed!" So, for being
a movie about people who happen to be
gay, rather than a movie about gay people,
THE BROKEN HEARTS CLUB gets an extra half-star.
as "firsts" go, this one is pretty lackluster.
A romantic comedy should sparkle and shine.
It should put you in the mood for spring,
even at 10 in the morning, but THE BROKEN
HEARTS CLUB falls short, relying far too
heavily on a SWINGERS-like style sense
and some pretty, pretty people to get
your juices flowing.
the story of a group of friends who all
hang out at/work at Jack's (Mahoney) restaurant
and bar, it's mainly the story of Dennis
(Olyphant), who realizes that, at 28,
no-strings-attached sex isn't enough anymore.
Olyphant, the scary-sexy drug dealer Todd
Gaines in GO, is an actor who can be incandescent
when given stuff to do. During his schlepping-around
scenes, he's merely pretty. But during
scenes that call for pouring himself into
the role—the love scenes spring to mind—he's
hotter'n a rocket.
(and after this movie, you may not use
that word the same way again) this non-gay
movie hits the lows of swishy stereotype,
winkingly posturing that these broadly
drawn goings-on let the audience in on
how gays really relate to each other when
the straights are away. Yes, yes, I know
all about being more downhome when it's
just the homefolks around you, but please.
The Taylor (Porter) character was just
way too over the top, presumably because
he had the freedom to relax and be so
in this created family of gay men.
important to note that writer-director
Berlanti makes some thoughtful comments
about our culture's valuation of physical
attractiveness. Beyond this, BROKEN HEARTS
CLUB adopts the FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL
boilerplate of our hero's romance lost,
found, lost, found… against a backdrop
of friends' romantic entanglements, and
yes, even the death of someone effervescent
Take a pal and pay full price for both tickets.
It’s worth a full-price ticket.
It’s worth a matinee ticket.
Wait for video rental.
Check out the video from the library, if you must.
While we would never encourage anyone to destroy a video...