• DVDiva

    “Off and Running”(First Run Features) Nicole Opper’s documentary “Off and Running: An American Coming of Age Story” provides a unique LGBT twist to the genre. The film begins with African-American teenager Avery, a good student and rising track and field star, writing a letter to her birth mother Kay. Adoptive lesbian mothers Travis and Tova raised Avery and her two brothers in a Jewish .... Read More
  • Queen of ‘the gays’

    Comedian Joan Rivers knows her audiences and she knows who most appreciates her acerbic wit and free-form social commentary. “I say with full-blown ego that I am the queen of the gays,” said Rivers, who will bring her rough-and-tumble act to Madison’s Overture Center for the Arts Oct. 23. “You can tell Kathy Griffin, who is my very good friend, that she can be princess and she can be lady .... Read More
  • Film reviews

    ‘All About Evil’(Backlash) Part homage, part parody, the grisly slasher flick “All About Evil” is writer/director Joshua Grannell’s magnum opus. Grannell’s drag persona Peaches Christ also appears in this story about drab San Francisco librarian Deb’s transformation into gore-goddess Deborah. Mink Stole and Cassandra Peterson (a.k.a. Elvira) co-star. Determined to keep her devoted la.... Read More
  • DVDiva

    Prodigal Sons(First Run Features) Transgender documentary filmmaker Kimberly Reed grew up in 1970s Helena, Mont., where anything could happen - and did. Reed’s childless parents, Loren and Carol, adopted baby Marc because they thought they were unable to conceive. But shortly after that, Carol became pregnant with Kim, born Paul, who was followed by another baby, Todd. The three brothers had a f.... Read More
  • Runaways and showgirls

    “The Runaways”(Sony Pictures Home Entertainment/Apparition) Biopics are always a hit-or-miss proposition, and “The Runaways” is a good case in point. An all-girl (emphasis on “girl,” as the band members were in their teens) rock band that actually played its own instruments and co-wrote its own songs, The Runaways formed in the mid-1970s, a time when such a thing was still on the risky.... Read More
  • Reel advice

    “Inception”(Warner Brothers) Written and directed by Christopher Nolan (“Memento,” “The Dark Knight”), “Inception” is about the business of dreams – dreams and the money that can be made by influencing the other people’s dreams. Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio), a sought-after dream extractor, is dealing with a living nightmare. He’s under suspicion in the death of his fellow dr.... Read More
  • An avatar and a messenger

    “Avatar”(20th Century Fox Home Entertainment/Light Storm) With 30 minutes worth of editing, James Cameron’s cinematic epic, “Avatar”could have qualified as his best movie. More than just a special effects feat for the senses, Cameron gets political, commenting on the destruction of the planet, corporate greed and the negative military mentality. In the not-too-distant future, paraplegic .... Read More
  • Film reviews

    “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse”(Summit Entertainment) Still obsessed with brooding vampire Edward (Robert Pattinson), graduating high school senior Bella (a slightly less sullen Kristen Stewart), accepts her true love’s marriage proposal in exchange for his promise to “change” (read: “kill”) her so that they can be together eternally. In other words, Mormon author Stephenie Meyer thinks.... Read More
  • Reel advice

    “Cyrus”(Fox Searchlight) Mumblecore continues the quest for a mainstream audience with the dark romantic comedy “Cyrus,” co-written/co-directed by Jay Duplass and Mark Duplass (who starred in 2009’s mumblequeer feature “Humpday”). Following, as it does, on the heels of “Greenberg” (starring Ben Stiller and mumblecore goddess Greta Gerwig), it looks like the crossover has official.... Read More
  • The amazing truth about pornography

    “The Amazing Truth About Queen Raquela”(E1/Regent/here!) According to filmmaker Olaf De Fleur, transsexual women in ancient myths were feminine but strong, guardians of kingdoms. De Fleur goes on to say that today many of them live outside of society, have little education and work low-paying jobs or in the sex industry. Based on actual events, De Fleur’s narrative style documentary tells th.... Read More