Parting Glances (1986)
December 10, 2014 8:00 AM - Subscribe

Parting Glances was one of the first major films about out, gay characters and AIDS and portrayed an unusual (for Hollywood) love triangle that was deeply grounded in queer sensibilities. The film launched the career of Steve Buscemi and featured hits from Bronski Beat. Reviews were mixed at the time, but it continues to be recognized as groundbreaking.
posted by latkes (4 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I guess I'm having my own personal HIV film festival.

This movie came out a bit before I was old enough for it, and I just watched it for the first time last night. Many dated aspects of the film stood out from the perspective of the 20teens: typewriters, stilted dialog, unexamined racialized symbolism. Certain aspects seemed fanciful: for example, despite his really fantastic, charming performance, not to mention his naturally gaunt appearance, Buscemi did not appear to be in any way dying in the movie, on the contrary, he was full of energy and life. There was something kind of amature about the movie, and it’s first-featureness shows. But ultimately I felt like the film just worked. The characters felt real to me and the sensibility was so grounded in real queer community that I believed it.

One surprise treat for me was Kathy Kinney. I never saw the Drew Carey show so didn’t know anything about her, but she was great in this and so charismatic. Reading up that she was close with Bill Sherwood, I could see her part and performance as an extension of their relationship.

There is something brave and bold to me about the fact that despite (or to spite?) decades of film tradition of tragic gay deaths in film, not to mention his character’s terminal diagnosis, Buscemi does not die at the end of this movie.
posted by latkes at 8:08 AM on December 10, 2014

To my shame, I've never seen this. Thanks for reminding me to do so.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 9:12 AM on December 10, 2014

It's on Netflix right now.
posted by latkes at 9:15 AM on December 10, 2014

I love this film. Buscemi is perfect. And Richard Ganoung later turns up in Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss.

MCMikeNamara, I will revoke your karaoke video onus if you promise to watch this before the end of the month.
posted by roger ackroyd at 2:58 PM on December 10, 2014

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