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Saturday, February 2, 2013

(LIST) Gay Sex Scenes That Made Movie History (19-15) !



Once upon a time, there were no gay and lesbian sections in the video stores, no queer film festivals, no debates over whether or not showing gay men having sex was good for the gay community's image. There were definitely no major theatrical releases of big-budget films in which gay men had sex, and certainly no one ever dreamed a film like that could ever be nominated for an Oscar.

Here, AfterElton.com takes a look back at the most important and groundbreaking gay male sex scenes in films. These are films that for the most part had a major American theatrical release, even if it was of limited scope, with a few groundbreaking foreign, art house and GLBT film festival movies included as well. These criteria are admittedly somewhat subjective, so if you feel we've missed a film that broke new ground with its use of sex between men, let us know.


19. The Living End (1992)

Craig Gilmore (left) and Mike Dytri in The Living End

Far from the cautious approach of Longtime Companion and Philadelphia, Gregg Araki's twisted gay/HIV Thelma & Louise homage manages to offend virtually everyone (the film's tagline, "An Irresponsible Movie by Gregg Araki," pretty much says it all). It's loaded with sex and violence, and centers on a very unhealthy relationship between two HIV-positive gay men.

There are a number of sex scenes in the film, but the most significant is an emotionally intense — and erotic — shower scene where Luke convinces Jon to have sex without a condom. It's a rough movie with uneven production values, and is very much a small indie film. But among all the far more polished and politically correct AIDS films coming out of Hollywood at the time, it's a standout for the anger at its heart.

Hotness: 8
Romance: 3
Significance: 8

 

18.  Priest (1994)
A British look at gay Roman Catholic priests, Priest is the story of Father Greg (Linus Roache), a gay man torn between his commitment to his vocation, his vow to guard the secrecy of the confessional and his relationship with another man (Robert Carlyle). The film was re-edited to be less sexually explicit for its U.S. theatrical release, but the original version is available on DVD. The sex scenes between Greg and his lover, Graham, are erotic, explicit and tender.

Priest stands out because it examines Greg's homosexuality in the context of a bigger discussion about celibacy and ethics in the Catholic Church, including heterosexual relationships in the priesthood, and the value of celibacy and vocation. While being confronted with the moral challenge of his relationship with Graham, Greg also has to deal with a young girl who has confessed to him that her father is molesting her, an interesting juxtaposition of ethical issues for the young priest.

The contrast of his tender love scenes with Graham, the heterosexual relationship of his parish priest and the abuse of his young parishioner by her father makes it clear that sexual morality is about something other than the gender of your partner, but about issues of harm and honor. The story would never have worked if Greg and Graham didn't have a genuine connection based on love as well as attraction, and their sex scenes show that connection powerfully.

Hotness: 9
Romance: 5
Significance: 8

17. Threesome (1994)
This really could have been just another throwaway teen movie about a bunch of college students trying to find their way in life, but it wasn't. And it's not just because one of the three roommates is a gay man.

The triangle is a fairly predictable one: The girl is in love with the gay guy, who is in love with the straight guy, who is in love with the girl. So far, other than its sympathetic characterization of the gay guy, which by 1994 was not really that earth-shattering, there was nothing new here.
And then they end up in bed together, where it's made absolutely clear to the audience that the two men have sex together as well as with the woman, and not in the standard "the girl is in the middle and the guys don't touch" way. The straight guy very deliberately takes the gay guy's hand during sex and puts it on his leg.

 

The film stars a young Lara Flynn Boyle as the girl, a young Josh Charles as the gay guy, and a young Stephen Baldwin (who later became a right-wing Republican and disavowed the role) as the straight guy. In a sign of things to come, none of the characters ends up dead or even unhappy, they all treat each other as equals, the girl was clearly in charge of her own sexual destiny, and everyone involved with the film went on to be successfu in the industry.

Hotness: 6
Romance: 6
Significance: 10

16.  Beautiful Thing (1996)
Britain has produced some of the most beautiful and important gay-themed films in history, and Beautiful Thing has to be near the top of the list. It tells the very simple story of two working class boys in a housing project in the U.K. who fall in love. One of them, Jamie (Glen Berry), has a supportive although unconventional mother, while the other, Ste (Scott Neal), has a violent, alcoholic father and an abusive older brother.

Glenn Berry (left) and Scott Neal in Beautiful Thing

Beautiful Thing is nothing more and nothing less than a love story between two teenagers. Their first sexual encounter is tender and romantic, and despite the many obvious obstacles, the ending is a happy one (although somewhat vague). Its depiction of working-class gay youth, the simple lines of the storytelling and the brilliant acting all add up to one of the most beautiful things in the history of gay cinema.

Hotness: 7
Romance: 10
Significance: 8

15. Velvet Goldmine
(1998)

From gay director Todd Haynes comes a dazzling and quite unusual film about British glam rock of the '60s, with thinly veiled portrayals of Bowie, Jagger and other androgynous rock luminaries. It stars Jonathan Rhys-Myers as the Bowie-esque Brian Slade and Ewan McGregor as a version of Iggy Pop named Curt Wild, with whom Slade's wife (Angela Bowie-clone Mandy Slade, played by Toni Collette) finds him in bed — which, legend has it, is actually where Angela found David, only it was with Mick Jagger.

Homosexuality is used mostly to shock, although it's refreshing to see the coy "androgyny" of the glam era resolved into actual gay sex for a change.

Hotness: 7
Romance: 5
Significance: 7

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