Gay Movie: "Eating Out"
What's a straight boy to do when the girl he likes only seems to go for gay guys?
Straight guy Caleb (Scott Lunsford) has a crush on Gwen (Emily Stiles). His roommate Kyle (Jim Verraros) has the hots for Gwen's gay best friend, Marc (Ryan Carnes), but nevertheless improbably convinces Caleb that his best chance for getting close to Gwen is by making the moves on Marc. Still following?
The premise may seem shaky -- writer/director Q. Allan Brocka characterized it as his attempt to emulate the spirit of a gay "Porky's" -- but somehow it manages to infuse more heart and substance than one would expect into a film featuring a steamy 17-minute phone-sex scene. Even so, the film is best appreciated as a sexy guilty pleasure and for its sharp dialogue (Gwen, after learning that yet another boyfriend has come out, complains, "I feel like a turnstile at the White Party.")
The principal cast delivers performances that are surprisingly solid for a low-budget independent comedy, particularly Carnes (who can now be seen as Gabrielle's gay gardener in "Desperate Housewives") and Stiles. Verraros, a top 10 finalist from the first season of "American Idol," may be the biggest surprise, given his inexperience as an actor. He also performs several of the songs in the film, some of which he wrote.
Brocka's feature debut was the toast of the gay film festivals in 2004, winning several audience awards and jury prizes, including the Levi's First Feature Award at San Francisco's Lesbian and Gay Film Festival. It now begins a limited theatrical run before its much-delayed DVD release.
by Kevin C. Goebel
Watch the "Eating Out" trailer!