hjames-97822

IMDb member since April 2015
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    50+
    IMDb Member
    4 years, 6 months

Reviews

Stonewall
(2015)

A Total Fraud
I did not expect a documentary. I expected a certain theatrical license here. But this film is insulting to LGBTQ people. They tried to appeal everyone and totally missed the mark.

Jeremy Irvine should never, never have been cast in this role. In fact, the roll of white bread Danny should never have been written.

Jonathan Rhys Meyers is miscast and useless. The best actor in the mess is Jonny Beauchamp who is nothing short of brilliant. They admitted to testing the roll of Danny (and Irvine) with straight focus groups. They said the character tested well because even though gay, he was "straight acting." Really? What an insult.

Stonewall is OUR history. It belongs to US and we do not need anyone to sanitize our history to make it more acceptable to straights. They take it and us as we are or just stay home.

There's a sex scene between Irvine and Meyers that is so routine and boring I just don't know why they wrote this in at all. I mean, really. Were they trying to show the suburbanites folks how we have sex? (Well, how some of us do anyway.) If and when this dog ever comes around again please do not waste your time or money. Gay people to not have to settle for second best anymore.

Steve Jobs
(2015)

What A Dog
Drum roll please! Finally! A movie with Winslet, Rogen and Fassbender all in at the same time and they all pretty much kept their clothes ON! Hollywood is indeed a magical place. Three of the biggest gotta get naked for the audience and the film crew actors and they are not naked. I say "pretty much" because I actually fell asleep for a brief moment in this dog. I have may have missed some nudity.

All these actors are badly cast. Fassbender was way down on the list of actors for this roll. He comes across as a cross between a thug and a truck driver in a turtleneck. Did they really, really think hanging those dippy glasses on him would make him more believable? Winslet and Rogen were cast for name value. Hundreds of actresses would have done a better job than Winslet. At least Seth looks the part. He's fat and has a beard. Cool. I have serious reservations about the personal morality of all of these actors and their previous roles. The producers could have done better.

Is anyone else sick of Steve Jobs movies? He was no genius. He and his twin Bill gates were first class opportunists. They saw a good thing on the ground floor and got in. Both were pros at latching on the work (genius?) of others and cutting them out. When Jobs returned to Apple he had to eat crow. Apple survived because of a cash infusion from Gates.

Stop worshiping this dope. And send Fassbender packing. (Hollywood will likely give him and Oscar because the feel they "owe" it to him. What a joke.)

Friends (With Benefits)
(2009)

Oh Come On, Money For This.
They all showed up and the photography itself is good. After that, they lost me.

How many more time will we have to see this same boring scenario of friends hooking up and then getting emotionally wrecked? It's just been done like this too many times.

The acting is very wooden in spots. The lighting often looks like film school students were on the crew. I watched this because I am Brendan Bradley fan. But even my main man's good efforts could not save this. (I did appreciate the one of him nude. Check out his performance in "Redwoods.." Outstanding.) This thing is nothing special.

Friends with Benefits
(2011)

Oh Come On
Cheesy forced dialogue.A ridiculous screenplay. Did we really have to have the usual "Mom caught us having sex" scene. How bogus can you get? Timberlake can not act. Sorry. He's too much a newbie to have tried to carry this. I found the so called sex scenes to be trite and routine and mostly unfunny.

There must be a director's play book out there for doing sex scenes. It's all predictable. She's on top. Then he's on top. Then he's bobbing ridiculously around under the sheets. Then he has to pee. Gotta get in those butt shots, right? Had don't forget those breasts, but be sure and keep one leg up. At least she demanded a butt double.

A snore. Yawn...............................

Such Good People
(2014)

So So Bad
It's amazing that so many people could be so bad all at the same time.

A totally lame script. Dialogue that is straight out of community theater. Bad lighting and tacky sets. It looks like they spent as little as possible. There's even a banker who smokes at his desk while waiting on clients. Really? The entire cast seems to be bored to tears. There is simply no energy at all. It's like watching the living dead sometimes. Very disappointed in Randy Harrison. He is lifeless and wooden. Unfortunately he has aged and not for the good. If this is typical of what he is now as an actor I have to say his best days are behind him. It appears his talents were limited to being 20 something, blonde, and will to take his clothes off. Pass. Fail! 2 stars because they all showed up.

Sense8
(2015)

Now I Know Why I Left Netflix
What a total bore. It's sci-fi trans meets a host of strange characters for some action scenes and, of course, sex.

This is as about as cookie cutter as you can get. Trans, lesbians, straights, gay boys...am I leaving anyone out. I was beginning to think I was back on HBO.

Th sex scenes are hopelessly gratuitous. I think there must be a book somewhere directors use to to come up with these scenes? The all look alike. But today's bored audiences seem to expect them, so what can you do? In one episode there's a montage of sex and orgy stuff. There's a skinny guy doing frontal in a hot tub while everyone else (according to the PR) is wearing a g-string or a sock. Why? In fact in that scene, one male actor is said to have been on the set meeting everyone for the first time wearing only a pouch. That must have been awkward. (He said the directing was so bogus he couldn't figure out who to kiss.) Oh, and there are plenty of fake orgasms to go around.

Is this nonsense all writers can come up with?

Shut Up and Kiss Me
(2010)

Not As Bad As Some May Say
OK, I am a Ronnie Kerr fan. I admit it. I wish he would write and produce more films. He's likable, built and likes a happy ending even if he has to invent one.

Look, making indie gay films isn't easy. It''s a miracle most of them get made at all. They almost never have enough money. They have to use peoples houses for sets. They have to shoot video because film costs a fortune.

The lighting is only tolerable. The sound too. The dialog is sometimes lame. But there's some very good scenes in this movie. The sidewalk soaking is one. But the opening with the silly woman from the video dating service is, I admit, annoying.

Ronnie likes to market his movies to the 30-40 year old gay crowd and older. Some of us want to see more mature gay mean dealing with their own issues. There's more than enough twink stuff out there as it is.

I wish Kerr would come back. I'll buy when he does.

Oh Happy Day
(2007)

Watched it 5 times!
What a joy! Finally a really good gay movie about two mature, out gay characters. They have jobs and responsibilities and don't live in San Francisco or spend every night in a gay bar.

I have read the two actors in the roles of Jonathon and David identify as straight. No matter. They will totally convince you they are gay. Gay and finding themselves spinning a one night stand into a full blown love affair.

The nonsense about working in an ad agency to market a "happy pill" is as silly as it comes. It's just the hook that the director uses to tie these two together. The scenes of practical jokes, long walks, courtship and just talking in bed make these two of the most admirable gay characters ever. And, there's a happy ending! Not to be missed.

The One
(2011)

Better Than You May Thinkl
This is Jon Prescott's film. And he is perfect. His Daniel is the ultimate WASP living a totally closeted life. He is a total emotional fraud, living in constant fear of being exposed. He reunites with former classmate Tommy and they have s torrid affair. Are they in love? Yes. But Tommy is as big a fake as Daniel and their love, while genuine, can not last.

Real love is built on truth and honesty and these two have neither. Daniel's wife Jen is clueless. She is totally oblivious to the fact that not only is her husband gay, but he's having a torrid and ongoing affair with Tommy. It all seems to hit her at once near the end of the film. It's as if someone finally hit her over the head.

The character of Tommy's mother is poorly cast and totally unnecessary. Daniel's father is played as a country club Yoda. And I have no idea why someone named Michael Billy is in this picture at all.

The ending is true to form. Liars and frauds do not win in love. Sometimes there are no happy endings. Watch it for the interplay between the two men.

Queer as Folk
(2000)

Uh...No...Really
Look, I know I'm the odd gay man out here. So many people seem so attached to this thing. I had never seen it. Finally, I watched most of season one. I won't be bothering with any more.

Dull. I found it mostly a colossal bore. One scene after another of gay men trolling and trying to get laid. Or actually getting laid. Everyone talks about how daring it all is but I just see it as standard all American soft core gay pron. There's nothing new here. Frankly, I once lived this life. I wouldn't pay money to have Showtime run it past me again.

For as long as there have been cameras people have been taking their clothes off and performing various acts for please. There is nothing--nothing--new here friends. All this miserable nonsense from Gale Harold and Randy Harrison about how being naked is helping them to grow as actors is the silliest thing. They drop their pants and roll around with another actor until we have a fake orgasm. That's it. And the reason they do it is for the cash--money. It's as simple as that. All this personal growth stuff is just nonsense. I mean, do you really need some particular talent to do hump scenes on film? Of course it all makes gays look to be rutting animals, endlessly on the prowl. I just get really tired of producers and outfits like Showtime lining their pockets at the expense of gays and the actors who portray them for a relatively small amount of the proceeds. I think gay people got suckered on this series. Just my opinion.

Were the World Mine
(2008)

What Do People See In This?
Tanner Cohen can not sing. Why he thinks he can, I do not know. Why others think he can, I do not know. The director seems infatuated with him. He keeps using him.

This dreadful mess lurches and sways its way from one ridiculous scene after another. I mean, how many scenes am I supposed to take that feature singing men in undershorts and or fairy wings? And the songs. Oh God, some of them play out like a Ukrainian funeral march.

Look, maybe it's me. I am a gay man--maybe the only gay man--who doesn't get it. I was endlessly tempted to hit the fast forward to spare myself any more. Is it the fact that I find Cohen less than talented and boring? Honestly I don't know. But I'd rather suffer a years worth of bikini waxes than to sit through this monstrosity again.

Getting Go, the Go Doc Project
(2013)

Weird and Rambling
What starts as a sort of pretend documentary finally morphs into a rambling series of shopping trips and fake interviews that leads to a sort of Beauty and the Beast sex romp that just left me wondering "Why?" One of the problems with any film that has anything to do with strippers and go-go dancers is that if you've seen one, you've basically seen them all. So here we have Camp, a real life dancer, who is supposedly being stalked (yes stalked) by Tanner Cohen's character.

Instead of being concerned about this little geek chasing him, we are to believe he takes him shopping, to the gym and them home for a sort of carry out dinner. Naturally, in a total leap we are to believe that the hot dancer finds himself in lust with the nerd and now wants to have sex with him. And not just any sex, but to bottom for him too boot. (In an interview Camp confessed the director got them both drunk to do these scenes. If you have to get loaded, are you really much of an actor?) Anyway, this all trolls on for what seems an unusually long period of time before finally sinking like a giant lead balloon running out of gas. The film is badly, badly edited. Chopped up and presented with these dreadfully annoying split screen sequences like something out of Directing 101. It's all pretty lame.

Just my opinion, but Camp is nice to look at if you go in for the muscle boy with lots of tats look. Cohen should reconsider and keep his clothes on.

Magic Mike XXL
(2015)

Rip Off
You see one male stripper and, apparently, you've seen em all.

A thin excuse for a cheap movie that once would have been relegated to drive in movie theaters and 2nd run houses. Aging strippers head out on a road trip of sorts to prove they till have what it takes. Just bogus and predictable all the way around. Compounded with Smith's role as a woman named Rome (really? Rome?) who owns a strip joint and is like nails on a chalk board.

There a couple of men of color but other wise it's white bread all the way and mostly aging white bread at that. Stripping is a young man's game. Most of these guys are headed to 40 and middle age.

They all look as if they took a dip in a pool filled with hair remover. Manganiello's trademark gray hair and salt and pepper beard have magically disappeared to make him look younger.

All the stars do double duty in their parts and as part of a coast to coast marketing machine designed to fill the seats and the producers pockets. They all agree that rehearsing and performing in thongs was a true bro boding experience and make fun of their junk and blah blah blah.

Save your money.

28 Hotel Rooms
(2012)

At Least 22 Rooms Too Many
This thing has one major flaw. It goes on far, far to long. his would have made a decent indie short. As it is, it turns into "another tryst another bed." Boring! In one scene the director actually fast forwards through and entire room stay by this couple, and it was surprisingly refreshing. They all start to look the same. They meet. They chat. They have sex. They order room service. They chat. Then it's usually back to the rack. At one point we are entertained with a scene in which he is painting her toenails. Sorry. Not worth the price of the rental.

As the scenes progress the sex gets a bit more inventive, including a rather silly nude scene on a balcony. Of course as time and rooms pass we learn more about their real lives outside adultery. They really seem to have little regard for those aspects of their lives so I don't much care either.

Messina fans will be pleased. There's a lot of him naked including some frontal shots. (Nothing to write home about, as they say.) Frankly before it was even half over I just didn't care about these characters or even these two actors. You can only watch so many fake orgasms before you've simply had enough. If I never see either of them naked again it will be fine.

Leave You in Me
(2007)

Uh...No
It's like a small cake without enough yeast. It never really rises to its full potential.

I stumbled across this little gem on the internet. Let me say that a substantial portion of the film is shot with the two principals nude. If you watch films to see naked people, well you probably have come to the wrong place. There's plenty of that very nicely done for you on porn sites. This is not it. In fact, after the first minute or so you don't much notice the nudity.

They have just finished having what appears to be some pretty routine sex. He has admitted he has been unfaithful. She is hurt. Cool. We have the makings right there of a good scene study. And then it slowly weakens.

They try to talk it out. They take a bath. They talk and talk and talk until finally their nudity begins to take a position of interest because the scene is lagging. The dialog is wandering. Now the mind starts to wander over their nude bodies. The voyeur has come out.

The director spends most of his camera time on her body, not his. The script deals mostly with her hurt and his desire to be contrite and make it up to her. But Steve is the one I want to know about. Why was he unfaithful? How often? When did it end, or will it end? Why is he so determined to stay with her? We never really know.

Instead, she (finally) gets dressed, goes out and has some revenge sex with a stranger who simply comes home with her, strips, has sex, dresses and leaves. Steve comes home to find her weeping. Naturally, they head back to the tub.

In summary: A good idea that is never fully developed in the screenplay and the dialog. Willing actors giving it what they have, but they are really at about 1st or 2nd year workshop level. They do the best they can. Remember, it is an indie film.

I think the fact it is shot in black and white is a great idea and adds to the funk the characters find their relationship to be in.

Shame
(2011)

Filth
For goodness sakes, stop making excuses and calling porno "legitimate." This thing is nothing but mediocre soft core.

I'm not certain there should even be a distinction any more. This is pornographic. I--love--good porn. There is nothing wrong with it. But it comes without pretense. Shame is just garbage that wants us to think it's "important." It's not. According to the actors the director was going to invite them all to his home for a nude party before filming began to loosen everyone up. Doesn't anyone have any self-respect any more or will they do anything for cash? Fassbender and the rest agreed to have soft core sex while being filmed for M-O-N-E-Y. We used to call this any number of things including being a prostitute. This nastiness covers it all: We are treated to various shots of his penis. Urination. We do miss any "money shot" but I wouldn't be surprised if there was one that ended on the floor. (It is clear that in the sex scenes he was not wearing a sock, so the women apparently agreed to playing with his gonads as part of the deal. I hope they got extra pay) He's a sex nut. He has sex with his sister. He looks for it everywhere. He watches it. He masturbates. He has difficulty having an erection and so who gives a fat rat's behind? This character could fall out that window after the sodomy scene and it would be fine.

I am sick, sick, sick of actors and directors being rewarded for cranking this garbage out. And then people talking about how daring it all is and how fearless they all were and how terribly important it all is. It's mediocre porn. You can get the really good professional deal at thousands of web sites for free.

In another era these actors performing this dirty stuff would be black balled. Now we reward them for gratuitous filth and invite them to meet Ellen. Then when interviewed they all talk about how professional they all were as they got banged. Aren't they always? Spare me any more of the con jobs.

Orange Is the New Black
(2013)

Let Me Save You Some Time
Jason Biggs is one of the least talented actors in the history of film. His chief claim to fame is an almost psychopathic need to have us view his penis on film. And he is the bright spot in this ongoing disaster. (Well, they paid him $8 million for 3 American Pie movies for the use of his penis. It beats getting a job, but it's not really a talent.) Orange Is The New Black is proof positive the public will buy anything. It's the same episode one after the other. Oh, the players and plots change ever so slightly, but there's only so much you can do in prison. Here's how it goes: Show lots of bare beasts. Shower scenes make this a no brainer. Show women, especially women of color as skunks and untrustworthy bullies. Have some lesbian kissing. More bare breasts. More bullying of the skinny white girl. Body cavity search...please bend over. (The character, not you.) Switch to dopey Jewish boyfriend (Biggs) acting like a clueless fool. Make him a writer. Otherwise, he's even more boring. Toss in some heartfelt scenes with parents and friends.

Back now to prison. Here comes the lesbian thing again. Show convicts working in menial jobs. Give them the keys to a truck. (How cool is that?) Do not--repeat, do not--forget the guards. Flakes, bullies, mental cases, a kindly old goof, a cutie who submits to oral sex. Oh...did I mention drug dealing? Sorry, my bad.

Flash back to Jason Biggs, the boy pal. He's sending her money. But he has kept his pants on so far. It's all good.

Other Space
(2015)

Lost In Space
GIGO.

Garbage In. Garbage Out. You start with a dopey, tired, trite, worn out premise of a story. Then you try and build a series of screenplays around this garbage. You hang on these plays an endless series of silly, predicable scenes and situations. Add in moronic cheesier dialog and then--then you get Yahoo to write the checks.

Bam! Ya got a series! This classless mess has an over all feel of cheap community theater. Not good community theater. The kind that had almost no budget. The cast is uninspired. I felt as if they were hired for a willingness to show up as long as they got paid.

It's almost like watching a set up of one SNL skit after another only loosely connected. Frankly, to call this entertainment from a major company is an insult.

I Am Michael
(2015)

Predictable
Not a Franco fan at all, but I did want to see this first feature effort from Justin Kelly. Kelly is also credited as co-screen writer. I admit, I am impressed with his direction and with the screenplay.

All too often gay cinema and movies in general really, suffer from weak stories and crumbling screenplays. Terrible dialog and a habit of relying on sex type scenes to prop them up. This is not the case here at all.

The subject is Michael Glatze, magazine editor and gay rights advocate who finds his epiphany in religion. He renounces his "lifestyle" and decides he is simply a straight guy with a "homosexual problem." No spoilers from me (even though I checked the box to be safe). Zach Quinto (Jon Groff's former lover) plays Glatze's boyfriend. Charlie Carver is the twink love interest (what else?). Emma Roberts does a fine turn as Glatze's wife. And then there's James Franco.

Couldn't they find anyone else for this role? Seriously, he has played these mentally challenged types so many times I can't hardly stand to watch any more. There must be someone--some other actor--that Van Sant and/or Kelly could have turned to. He really is over used and becoming tiresome to watch.

Oh yes, there's some skin. There's a 3-way between Franco, Quinto and Carver that the PR crew is hyping the hell out of. It's not all that steamy. When they start interviewing the actors repeatedly about a single sex scene, you know they are in trouble. About all you will see is some manicured man butt and who hasn't seen this about a thousand times already? Still, they are looking for wider distribution. If you get the chance, I suggest you see it. Even though it means enduring one of Franco's typical, retread jobs as an actor.

Another Gay Movie
(2006)

The Worst...Almost
As a gay man it's disappointing that so many gay men actually like this dreck. Or that it found its way to Tribeca.

Every conceivable bad thought anyone ever had about gay men is ruthlessly portrayed here. Oh yes, there's a laugh or two. But mostly it's just awful gross out material that won't give you a break to breath. It's all here. Scat. Vomit discharged onto a guys crack. Sex, sex and more sex. Plenty of frontal. (It's not Dante's Cove which is worse.) There's even a Seth Rogen nude look alike for the chubby chaser crowd. Not to mention a gerbil...and on and on and on and on.

You seriously may want to consider having a few drinks before you subject yourself to this disaster. And no, there really is no story line at all. Nothing worth mentioning anyway. If you have an IQ in the range of 3-5 you'll probably like this. If I were any of these actors including Michael Carbonaro, I would try to erase this from my resume and my memory.

True Story
(2015)

Anothe Franco Phone Job
I must confess I wonder what it is about James Franco that causes people to gladly through money at him? Money they are often destined to lose. Brad Pitt is producing and he has the cash to spare so I suppose it's no loss. And there's likely to be a tax benefit buried in this somewhere.

Franco has a bad habit of appearing in money losing films and I boldly predict this one is his latest. This really should never have been more than a TV movie of the week. It's a rip off (and a poor one) of Capote's In Cold Blood. It want's to be a muscle car but is hiding no more than 4 cylinders under its hood.

Franco, I will say, steals the show. He overwhelms just about every other actor in the cast, especially Hill who can not make the grade against him. (Sometimes his acting almost devours the scenery and not in a good way.) But wait. Franco has been portraying this same maniacal, loser doper for years and years. If he doesn't have it down by now, he's hopeless.

It's not a bad effort for a first time director. But if I were you I'd wait until it's available at the bargain 2nd run matinée house. Not worth a full priced ticket. Unless you are a Franco groupie. Then you'd pay to watch him shovel dirt.

Sex Tape
(2014)

What A Pity
Zero if that were possible.

First you need a S-T-O-R-Y to tell. There isn't much to tell here. They could have trimmed an hour and gotten to the point. But then they couldn't have asked $9 for a discount matinée ticket, could they? I feel sorry for Ms. Diaz. She is a fine actress. I hope she was well paid for having wasted her time and her talents in this monstrosity. A note to Mr. Segal. While you have certain abilities as an actor, you are not a screen writer. This is evidenced here. Your script stinks. The dialog is worse. In spots it literally made me cringe. Until you took your clothes off. Then things really went flaccid. (Sorry. I couldn't resist.) In addition Mr. Segel, your penis is not worth the price of admission. You were short changed by God. I, in turn, was shorted by you when the ticket money left my account. You do not have a particularly attractive roaring toward middle age body. You and your other aging frat boy pals like Hader, Rogan and so forth are generally pale, pasty, out of shape and uninteresting when nude. No one will ever confuse any of you with the late Steve McQueen. Whomever has convinced you that you are a sexy leading man has lied to to you. Please remain clothed.

Nothing left to say. Because that's all your so called movie was about to begin with.

Rabbit Hole
(2010)

John Cameron Mitchell's One Car Funeral
Mitchell, of course, leads the procession straight in to a ditch. As usual. He has to be the most over rated person ever to be involved in the entertainment industry. He should thank Heaven for Hedwig. Now he has a permanent retirement plan.

The playwright has delivered a superb play. Yes, I have seen it staged and it is mesmerizing. It is a great work of literary art and a prize winner too boot.

The cast in the film is stellar. Every single one of them an old pro with the exception of newcomer Teller. And he is just fine in his role. Then along comes John Cameron Mitchell to literally gum up the works. This guy simply can not make a film anyone really, really wants to pay to see. Time after time he spews up God knows what sort of new trash that consistently loses money for the backers. Yet, they flock to back the next Mitchell project. He literally steps in a pile of dung and come out with a bouquet.

He should thank his good fortune that he was blessed with so much good talent to work with here. The story and a superior cast make this worthwhile in spite of this pasty, tawdry porno wannabe Broadway hustler. I just wish he had stayed completely out of their way.

That Awkward Moment
(2014)

In A Different Time his Would Be No More Than A B Movie
This story line has been played out more times on the screen in one form or another than there have been bio pics about Henry VIII. Long in the tooth, waning frat boy types. Plenty of WTF references, dopey dialog and beer. And some nudity. Of course, gotta have some manicured male rear ends on display or why hire Zac Efron? (Do people who salivate over seeing male actor's butts ever stop think of what they are actually for?) The director could have...and I hate this trite phrase...phoned it in. As could all the actors. Some here have actually called this a "masterpiece." Seriously? You may need to turn off your cable provider and see more real films. No friends, there's nothing new here. Nothing to see. In 3 or 4 years I could bring this film up in conversation and you won't even recall it.

I feel like a burrito.

Drive
(2011)

Proof Gosling Is A One Trick Pony
Dull. Just dull. A film that seemingly hopes to prove Ryan Gosling has "depth." Yes, a pretty boy Disney dude can indeed play a tough criminal gangster type. Sure.

He broods. He punches. He beats and wails. You know the drill. Pure Gosling. And America buys this schtick over and over again from him. Drive. Only God Forgives. The Believer. Go ahead. Show us that range of yours kid.

The director, IMHO, seems to build scripts around this actor. Why? There's just nothing special happening here we haven't seen a hundred times before. Bogart's legacy is safe.

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