By Brandon Voss
Originally published on Advocate.com October 21 2011 4:57 PM ET
10. FILM: Norman
Cougar Town’s Dan Byrd, who played a bullied gay teen in Easy A, stars as the titular troubled high schooler — he fakes cancer while caring for his dying dad — in Jonathan Segal’s lyrical coming-of-age dramedy, which opens October 21 in limited release. Straw Dogs baddie Billy Lush (pictured) also stars as Norman’s gay best friend James, who tries to convince him to join the drama club. For more info visit normanthemovie.com.
9. DVD: The One
Though it begins with a gossipy gay brunch in Manhattan, Caytha Jentis’s sweet and sturdy romantic comedy is refreshingly full of surprises. Jon Prescott, who played Neal Cassady in Howl, stars as Daniel, a closeted jock who appears consumed by his inconvenient lust and gnawing stomach ulcers as his pregnant wife eventually wises up to the fact that his heart belongs to Tommy, a charismatic scamp played by Ian Novick.
8. FILM: Paul Goodman Changed My Life
Out director Jonathan Lee introduces a new generation to late intellectual Paul Goodman, a countercultural and highly influential sociologist, anarchist, pacifist, and openly bisexual father best remembered as the author of Growing Up Absurd and the 1969 essay “Being Queer.” Produced by trans filmmaker Kimberly Reed, this new documentary runs through November 1 at New York’s Film Forum. For more info visit filmforum.org.
7. DVD: Rent Boys, Uncle Bob, Out Late, and Ten More Good Years
What’s up, docs? Meet the escorts at Berlin’s Bahnhof Zoo train station in Rosa von Praunheim’s Rent Boys; In Out Late, an inspirational film by Beatrice Alda and Jennifer Brooke, LGBT seniors explain why it’s better late than never; In Uncle Bob, Robert Oppel celebrates the life of his uncle, a murdered gay activist best known as the 1974 Oscars streaker; and Michael Jacoby’s Ten More Good Years reveres our LGBT elders.
6. DVD: The Real L Word: Season Two
Representing the Los Angeles lesbian scene, the second season of this sexy Showtime reality series features mostly new faces and returning favorite Whitney, a wild child who isn’t afraid to whip out a strap-on. Get to know L.A. newbie Claire, who’s starting up an online lesbian magazine; butch activist Sadjah, who was once nominated for prom queen; and partners Cori and Kacy, who seek to start a family through artificial insemination.
5. THEATER: Baby Daddy
Hot on the tail of its New York debut, Alec Mapa’s latest solo show makes its West Coast premiere October 21 through October 23 at the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center’s Renberg Theatre. The gay comic gabs about how life has changed since he and his hubby adopted a five-year-old boy, but rest assured the Ugly Betty and Desperate Housewives alum will still quip about Grindr and anal beads. For more info visit lagaycenter.org.
4. MUSIC: Nocturnes, Uh Huh Her
Currently headlining the Keep A Breast music tour to promote breast cancer prevention and awareness, electro-pop duo Uh Huh Her — Southwest Airlines ejectees Camila Grey and L Word alum Leisha Hailey — have just released the follow-up to their 2008 debut Common Reaction. Coproduced by Wendy Melvoin of Wendy and Lisa fame, the synth-spurred album includes “Same High,” which was written for The Kids Are All Right.
3. TV: The World’s Worst Place to be Gay?
Logo’s pro-social campaign beCAUSE launches with the October 22 U.S. premiere of a BBC Three documentary in which gay BBC Radio 1 DJ Scott Mills travels to Uganda, where homosexual is seriously illegal. Mills risks his life by interviewing gay Ugandans and coming out to members of parliament. Future docs in the series include Illegal Love, The Legacy of Brendan Burke, and Outrage. For more info visit logotv.com/because.
2. DVD: Red State
Now on DVD following a 16-city screening tour, Kevin Smith’s satirical horror movie both terrifies and tickles with its depiction of Fred Phelpsian religious fundamentalists who protest gay funerals and torture high school boys for their perceived homosexuality. Melissa Leo, True Blood’s Kevin Alejandro, and Will & Grace’s Michael Angarano star in the film, which also features Office Space’s Stephen Root as a blackmailed gay sheriff.
1. FILM: The Green
Reminiscent of Doubt and The Children’s Hour, this fall’s must-see gay film is now on video-on-demand. Penned by out Verizon pitchman Paul Marcarelli, out director Steven Williford’s earnest drama stars the arresting Jason Butler Harner as a gay teacher accused of inappropriate behavior with a male student. Cheyenne Jackson is the leery boyfriend, and Julia Ormond plays their lesbian lawyer. For more info visit thegreenthemovie.com.