a/perture Cinema, AFI, Amazon Prime, Ang Lee, Anna Faris, Anne Hathaway, Brokeback Mountain, David Harbour, DVD.com, Heath Ledger, IMDb, Jake Gyllenhaal, Linda Cardellini, Michelle Williams, Netflix, Randy Quaid, Rotten Tomatoes, The Less Desirables
a/perture cinema, the Official Movie Sponsor of The Less Desirables, presents The Less Desirables Movie of the Week, Brokeback Mountain (2005), starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Heath Ledger, Michelle Williams and Anne Hathaway.
Per IMDb: “The story of a forbidden and secretive relationship between two cowboys, and their lives over the years. ”
Jack Twist (Gyllenhaal) and Ennis Del Mar (Ledger) are hired by a somewhat hard-arsed rancher to herd his sheep during the summer in the Wyoming mountains in 1963. No sleeping in camp; only with the sheep. No fire around the sheep, either. After a night of heavy drinking and whilst Ennis is freezing by a fire (that they shouldn’t have built), Jack comes on to Ennis, who turns him down, at least initially. He eventually gives in. Ennis insists that it was a one-time incident, but they actually start a relationship; one of both the physical and emotional varieties. Their summer together is cut short. They have a scuffle.
Ennis marries his fiancée Alma Beers and they have two little girls. Jack goes to the rancher to find out if he needs work who informs him that he saw what they were doing and he won’t hire him. So Jack heads to Texas where he meets rodeo rider Lureen (Hathaway). They have a son, together. Years pass.
Jack comes to visit Ennis and Alma witnesses them in a passionate kiss. Ennis and Jack goes off on a fishing trip and Alma knows what they’re off to do. She’s quite upset. While on their “fishing trip” Jack tells Ennis he thinks they should run off together and have their own ranch. Ennis says he can’t give up his family. By this time, Lureen has quit rodeoing and has gone to work for her father’s tractor company, where Jack is their best salesman. Even though they can’t be together permanently, they still have occasional fishing trips.
Ennis’ and Alma’s marriage dissolves, and Jack comes to see about them starting a life together, but Ennis won’t leave his girls. Jack is very upset and finds solace with a Mexican male prostitute. During Thanksgiving, Alma tells Ennis she knows what was going on and he flips out threatening violence toward her. He runs out and while heading to a bar almost gets hit by a car, the driver of which Ennis attacks and then gets his arse handed to him. He later hooks up with waitress Cassie (Linda Cardellini). Jack and Lureen meet Randall and Lashawn at a community dance. Jack starts an affair with Randall (David Harbour) but later tells Ennis it was with Lashawn (Anna Farris). Ennis tells Jack that they need to wait a while before they see each other again. That leads to an argument. Do they make up? Do they continue on? You’ll have to watch to see.
This film gets reduced to “that gay movie” and that’s not really fair because, yes, it is about a gay relationship, but it’s more about the relationship on any plane, gay or not. There’s struggles and obstacles. Really, I think it goes beyond even that. I don’t think that Ennis was gay, he just had a love for Jack. I don’t know if Jack was gay or bisexual or what. I know the feelings they had for each other was genuine. But, that was what same-sex relationships had to deal with in the ’60s and ’70s. I thought it was a great film and the “homosexuality” aspect wasn’t really forefront as much as the relationship. I know I’ve said that a lot here but there’s really not saying it enough.
We did get to see both Anne Hathaway’s and Michelle Williams’ breasts, so that was a bonus. Yay and thanks to both of them. And Linda Cardellini in anything makes it all okay. I have to say I’m not too familiar with the Wyomingite accent but Heath Ledger’s accent was a bit muddled. That’s okay, though. The acting itself more than made up for it.
This film is one of the 400 nominees for AFI‘s 100 Years… 100 Movies. It’s only available for rent on Amazon Prime or on Netflix‘s DVD.com. But, I own my copy and that’s how I watched it. Rotten Tomatoes rates it at 87% Fresh with an Audience Score of 82%. The Critics’ consensus is: “A beautiful, epic Western, Brokeback Mountain’s love story is imbued with heartbreaking universality thanks to moving performances by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.” IMDb rates it at 7.7 stars out of 10.
The film was nominated for eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor in Lead Role (Ledger), Best Actor in Supporting Role (Gyllenhaal), Best Actress in a Lead Role (Williams) and Best Cinematography. It ended up winning Best Director (Ang Lee), Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Original Score (Gustavo Santaolalla). I liked the film and thought the story line was quite good, the scenery was beautiful and the acting superb. I rate it 4 out of 5 stars. Have you seen it? What did you think? What would you want to see/hear me review?
Until tomorrow, same blog channel…
“I wish I knew how to quit you.” – Jack Twist