Monday, May 22, 2006

Waste of Time

This review has also been posted to

If you're a trusting sort, read the title of this review and stop--don't spend another moment thinking about this film. But if you must know why you should not waste 95 minutes of your life on it, as I did, read on.

Garcon Stupide has delusions of grandeur, as does its main character, a young gay lad who seeks his thrills in anonymous sexual encounters and believes he's a good photographer because he takes pictures with the built-in camera of his cellular phone.

Said lad (Loic, played by first-timer Philippe Chatagny) is pretty enough to warrant the numerous extended closeups of his face that comprise half the film--the picture on the box does not do his enchanting smile justice--but the pablum he speaks is by turns silly, nonsensical, and stupid. The plot, such as it is, takes its cue from the dialogue, and in the end it feels like a series of utterly random events have carried us to an implausible conclusion.

What ought to make the film at least a little bit palatable for a gay audience--the gritty sex in which Loic engages quite freely during the film's first half--is filmed inelegantly and, in one uninspired split-screen scene, juxtaposed with the workings of factory machinery. This is an odd place for the director to make a play at realism in a tale otherwise so unconstrained by it!

If you're looking for a good gay coming-of-age story, try Dorian Blues. You may not get to see the main character naked, but at least you'll respect yourself in the morning.

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