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DVD Review: Brokeback Mountain

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Obviously, Brokeback Mountain is not for everyone, as evidenced by how many people were too nervous to go see it in packed theaters during its extended run. It’s not what you expect either, since it has no mincing fairies, no comic-relief limp-wristed lisping queens, and absolutely no preaching, hidden messages or agendas. In fact the main character-Ennis (Heath Ledger) is probably one of the most “manly” men ever seen in a movie.

So let’s start with the DVD basics. If you’ve never seen the movie, watch it first. If you have seen the movie, watch all the extra features BEFORE you see it again. They are all a joy, though I should warn you they take a while to root through, but it’s time well spent and definitely forth it.

I found only one fault with the DVD – and that was that it needed a “deleted scenes” section; that I know exists because they’re there taunting you in the trailer I saw online. Heath and Jake are said to have had to shoot the kissing scenes at the bottom of the stairs 13 times, and they also had to shoot and reshoot the lovemaking in the tent, and darn it all, I wanted to see those outtakes! Oh well maybe in the “collector’s” edition.

About the Movie:
First of all, visually it’s in crystal clear focus. The many times I saw it in a theater, not once was it completely focused, but on DVD it’s an absolute joy. Since this is a very quiet film, you don’t have to deal with muffled explosions coming from the theater next to you either.

About the Story:
Two young men, a ranch hand, and a up-and-coming rodeo bull rider (Jake Gyllenhaal), (the very definitions of the word “cowboy”) are so down on their luck, that they’re forced to do something no cowboy wants to do — herd sheep over the summer on Brokeback Mountain. (Some have criticized this, asking how it could be a cowboy movie if they’re herding sheep… read on)

Simply put, straight men who see this movie identify with the main characters, before they realize that they have… and by then it’s too late. There lies the problem. The movie hits a little too close to home. Jack and Ennis regularly go camping in the wilderness, were brought up to own and use guns. They hunt elk and wild game; they fish, carry hunting knives and know how to survive in the forest on their own. They own dogs, love life on horseback, tend cattle, are tough enough to ride bulls in rodeos, live on ranches, date women, drink whiskey and beer, get into bar fights, and own and repair old pick-up trucks.

[ADBLOCKHERE]The two young men never planned or expected to fall into the situation they found themselves in, and have no idea how to react to it themselves, once they’ve realized what’s happened. The concept of a man falling in love with another man is so alien to them, that they don’t even know the words to describe their feelings; Ennis can only call it “This thing”.

When the summer ends, they go back to typical Western ranching, herding cattle and horses, competing in the rodeo, selling farm equipment and existing in the standard cowboy life, fathering children, attending church, Fourth of July celebrations, and arguing with their wives.

Some women will get bogged down with the two men cheating on their marriage vows, and that’s very valid, but the point of this tragic tale is that the intolerances of the time, that still exist now, have forced these men to make commitments they never wanted. Jack and Ennis were committed to each other before their marriages, and that bond lasted long after the ashes settled on their straight facades.

As for the objectionable “explicit” sex scenes so many bible pounders are up in arms about — Huh???? It must be the scenes between the husbands and their wives, because in the intimate scenes between the men — hell they’re never shown with their jeans off together, and only one is shirtless! Jake and Heath are shown completely nude (separately) only once each in the whole film, with no frontal nudity at all. Heath’s scene is out of focus to boot!

If all you attend a movie for is sex scenes, you’d be better off straight, gawking at the women in their sexy attire and bare breasts in the bedroom or the back seat of a T-bird. With all the sex in today’s movies between men and women bordering on pornography, it’s actually disappointing in a way that you don’t see the men expressing their physical love for each other. In fact, the sex between the men is done in classic Alfred Hitchcock fashion and you’ll swear you saw more than you actually did, because it’s left to your imagination (and wonderment as to what all the fuss was about.) After you’ve played it a second time you’ll be astonished that no sexual contact is actually shown at all – except what you “thought” you saw!

And there lies the proof. This movie’s purpose was definitely NOT made to put the “Sex” in homosexual, and is just a damned good simple love story, and anyone too scared to see it, is probably just too unsure of their own sexuality to admit it to themselves.

If ever a movie made you walk in someone else’s shoes, this is it.

So go grab your masculine pride, your wife/girlfriend to put on your arm to prove you’re straight, and head to the nearest video store, or department store, and rent or buy it. You’ll be shocked when you laugh, and then cry while seeing a damned good movie…

As you hit STOP on your remote, you’ll know undoubtedly, why the two shirts worn by Jack and Ennis brought in $101,100.51 (!) recently at auction to benefit a children’s charity, and the beat-up and rusted GMC truck that Jack drove at the opening fetched $70,000 dollars.

By the way, if you haven’t seen it yet, pay close attention to what happens to the shirts they wear up on the mountain, and to the horse and rider that Ennis whittles in the tent during the rain storm, you’ll see them again. Remember that this movie was made on a shoe-string budget, so ignore Heath’s empty pierced ear lobes, and the disappearing log that Jack almost splits, but then vanishes.

On a scale of five stars, I give this DVD ****** …Yes I can count, that’s six.

About Jet Gardner

I like collecting books, music, movies, chess sets and friends
  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Alpha, I’d recomment two author…

    Gordon Merrick wrote an incredible trilogy starting with a literary masterpiece called “The Lord Won’t Mind” which I’d wholeheartedly recommend along with its two sequels

    I’d also recommend Patricia Niel Warren’s “The Front Runner” and also “the Fancy Dancer”

    Enjoy
    Jet

  • alfa13

    A reply to Nancy : Hello, thanks for your advice. It’s very strange you talk me about this book because I’m just starting to read it. I begun next sunday. I read it in french and it’s realy well written. I like this book.

    To Jet : Hello my friend. Thanks too for your reply.I’ve looked for the books you recommended me but I didn’t find them yet. How are you ?

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet In Columbus

    alfa I don’t know if the short story version of BBM is translated into french or not. I know they’re in negotiations to turn “The Front Runner” into a movie because of BBM’s success though, and it may turn out to be better than BBM if that’s possible as I’ve fallen in love with that book.

    Jet

  • JustOneMan

    Hey Jet….

    CNN – Bush’s poll numbers up

    Thanks Slick Willy!

    [Edited]

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet In Columbus

    Thank you Just one Moron… I didn’t know you cared… Love hugs and kisses… Jet

  • alfa13

    Hey Jet,
    please, send me a few words.Talk me about you and your life in Colombus. I would like to know you more if you want of course.Do you like french cooking ? I could send you some receipts if you are interested in. Goodbye.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Alfa 13
    Moi seront loin de voici pendant quelque temps mon amie , mais Moi vouloir réponse vous une autour de une semaine. je vous remercie

    Jet

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus
  • http://jetfireone.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Universal Studios Home Entertainment has announced ‘Brokeback Mountain (Collector’s Edition)’ will ride onto Combo Format HD-DVD/DVD on the increasingly popular January 23 release date.

    The disc should include all the as-of-yet extra features that will be included on the two-disc collector’s edition DVD, also arriving January 23. The HD-DVD presentation will be in widescreen 1.85:1 1080p video and Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 audio, while the flipside DVD presentation will carry both DTS 5.1 and Dolby Digital 5.1 audio tracks along with 480p video.

    ‘Brokeback Mountain (Collector’s Edition)’ will carry an SRP of $34.98.

  • http://jetfireone.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus
  • http://jetfireone.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    HBO will be showing BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
    Sunday Nov 26 7:30PM
    Monday Nov 27 2:40PM
    Wed Nov 29 7:30pM
    Thurs Nov 30 4:15AM
    All times are Eastern Time zone

  • http://jetfireone.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    I’ve given my novel based on this movie its own web page, you can now find it at blogspot

    Thanks for all the e-mails, I didn’t think anyone missed it.

    Jet

  • alfa13

    Hey Jet
    I haven’t write to you for a long time, sorry.
    I have had some little problems and I have moved to an other house. I’m living alone now, so…it was a little bit hard but now it’s ok, I think it’s ok… it doesn’t matter.
    How are you ?
    Yesterday I watched again BBM ; even if I have watched this film many, many times, it’s always a great moment of pleasure and dream, it’s a kind of therapy for me. When I don’t know anymore what to believe in, I watch BBM, when I don’t know anymore what to trust in, I do the same…
    Bye

  • http://jetfireone.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Alpha thanks for writing, I’ve moved the Brokeback novel to its own page. You can find it by clicking here

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Australia native and prominent film actor and Oscar nominee Heath Ledger was found dead in his New York apartment this afternoon, reports the New York Times. He was 28 years old.

    Ledger’s body was found by his housekeeper and masseuse. Police suspect a drug overdose, possibly as suicide.

    Born on April 4, 1979 in Perth, Australia, Ledger performed in Australian film and television before being cast as Patrick Verona in the 1999 romantic comedy 10 Things I Hate About You, with other roles in American cinema including that of Sonny Grotowski in Monster’s Ball in 2001 and Ennis Del Mar in Ang Lee’s 2005 box office smash Brokeback Mountain.

    Ledger leaves one daughter, Matilda Rose, born in 2005.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    I just can’t believe that Heath is gone… and it looks more and more like suicide. what a waste…

  • http://jetsgaypride.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    Reports are going around that Jake Gyllenhaal was involved in a scuffle over Heath Ledger in Montreal over the weekend. The truth appears to be that Gyllenhaal had a blogger from DrunkenStepfather thrown out of a bar after the blogger harassed him.

    We’re told by sources who were present that the blogger in question said, ‘Hey isn’t that the guy who killed Heath Ledger?’ prompting Jake to yell to the bouncers ‘get these guys out of my face.’ The instigator and his crew were then thrown out. We originally read this blog post yesterday, where the site definitely had ‘killed’ not ‘kissed’ up until it was later changed. The post actually backs up this supposed kill claim by ranting in the item that if Jake was Ledger’s friend, he probably would have been there for him in his low point.”

  • http://jetssciencepage.blogspot.com/ Jet Gardner

    To read my Brokeback Mountain ~ The Complete Long-Version

    Novel 1943-2006, click ~>here<~