21 July 2005 | gradyharp
More than meets the eye
PROM QUEEN succeeds not only because it is a controversial subject based on a true incident, but because of the light touch director John L'Ecuyer adds to the dimension of storytelling. Writers Michael MacLennan and Kent Staines have pieced together the facts from a now famous 'hearing' in Quebec concerning one teenage boy's challenging the Catholic Church school policies about sexual preferences in preventing him from attending a high school Prom and have fleshed out the characters to make the story not only meaningfully important but also entertaining.
Marc Hall (Aaron Ashmore) is a fun-loving, blue-haired gay lad who has a partner Jason (Mac Fyfe) and is comfortable in a semi-closeted way, and who attends a Catholic high school in Quebec. He is fortunate to have a band of accepting and supporting friends like Beau (eye candy actor Trevor Blumas) and Carly (Tamara Hope) among others who encourage Marc to bring his boyfriend to the upcoming Prom. The school officials - principal and school board - are adamant that the Catholic Church regards sames sex relationships as sin and refuse to allow Marc to consider attending the Prom with Jason.
Marc decides to 'come out' to his parents Emily (Marie Tifo) and Audy (Jean Pierre Bergeron) and they warmly assure him they have known for years ("Your hair. It's blue. And you have a poster of Celine Dion on your wall. We know.") With the support of his friends and a gay lawyer Lonnie Winn (Scott Thompson), Marc agrees to challenge the school/church stance and in a touching courtroom drama Marc pleads his case. Though due to the familiarity of the case the audience knows from the beginning that Marc Hall won his right to attend the Prom with Jason, it is in the telling that the story takes flight.
Though 'made for TV' budgetary constraints and format are obvious, PROM QUEEN boasts some fine actors and manages to bring to the screen another important hallmark in the Human Rights field. While some may avoid this film for fear of its being a 'gay movie', rest assured that the content is handled in a touching and realistic way. Recommended for all audiences, especially the teens who need to see both sides of a bit of history. Grady Harp