Tag Archives: eric schaeffer
Boy Meets Girl (2014)
Written and Directed by Eric Schaeffer
Gender is weird. Think about it: there’s two types of a being, and they have to come together in order to procreate. That’s just strange as hell. Like, why isn’t it that there’s just one type of being, and when it wants to make more beings, it just makes them? There’s probably some evolutionary reason for this I guess, like that sexual reproduction makes evolution faster because DNA recombines as opposed to asexual reproduction where DNA doesn’t recombine and thus evolution takes way longer (I checked Yahoo Answers) but still, it’s weird. I don’t care that it’s why we’re here and why we continue to be here—it just doesn’t jive with our modern minds, conceptually. We like things instant. It’s lame that I can’t just tell my body to make a baby and then a baby happens. Oh well, maybe in the next update.
It’s not just that we’re all a bunch of spoiled technobrats, though—love itself makes us realize how dumb gender is. People don’t fall in love with gender—we’re not a bunch of wandering automatons with procreation as our sole directive. We’re philosophical beings looking for a person that our soul gels with. The downside of that beautiful reality is that sometimes, said person isn’t someone we’re sexually attracted to—whatever, that’s what friends are for. Another downside is that maybe said person is someone you are sexually attracted to, but they are of a gender you are not used to being sexually attracted to. That can get messy.
Here’s the thing, though. There’s a point of time in everyone’s life—whether you’re gay, straight, or bi—where even the gender, or genders, that you are currently sexually attracted to, you weren’t used to being sexually attracted to, because you weren’t used to being sexually attracted to anyone at all. This period is called early adolescence, and everyone goes through it. And because everyone goes through it, everyone should be able to relate to this film, no matter what their sexual orientation.
On top of that, when you think about it, falling in love in general is like falling in love with a gender you’re not ready to fall in love with, because it’s always just that scary, and new, and strange, and confusing, even if you’ve fallen in love several times before. Eric Schaeffer understands this, and has imbued this seemingly specifically-themed film with universal themes. As a result, Boy Meets Girl transcends its Queer Cinema sub-genre and has more to say about love than the vast majority of romance movies.
How to Be a Man (2013)
Directed by Chadd Harbold
Written by Bryan Gaynor, Chadd Harbold, and Gavin McInnes
Story by Chadd Harbold
Mild spoilers ahead.
I love me some Gavin McInnes. From his appearances on Red Eye, to his pieces for Taki Mag, to his YouTube shorts, to his standup, to his book, to his previous feature-film, The Brotherhood of the Traveling Rants, I’m certainly a fan of his work, and a fan of him as a person, too—when I interviewed him here last year, he was a delight. Sweet and honest and gracious, the polar opposite of what his detractors might expect him to be based on his brash demeanor and polarizing views on all things life. I see him as a living embodiment of the phrase ‘warts and all’, and an inspiration to anyone who holds honesty as a virtue. A man as man ‘might be and ought to be’, to borrow a Rand-ism.
All this to say, I have a knot in my stomach as I write this review, because I have a duty to be honest here—a duty as a critic, of course, but also, a duty to Gavin and all that he stands for. He would not want me to sugarcoat my feelings on this film just because I like him. That would not be very manly of me. And so, here goes.
I did not like this movie.
This is not a sponsored post, I have not been paid to choose these, so please, don’t roll your eyes at this post before reading it, assuming Smug Film has ‘sold out’ or ‘jumped the shark’ or whatever the kids are calling these days. Such is not the case. Every single item on this list, I stand by 100%, and in fact own.
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If you’ve never heard of Eric Schaeffer, today is your lucky day, because I am about to introduce you to quite possibly your new favorite filmmaker. I say ‘possibly’ because he’s definitely not for everyone. Either you’ll dig his vibe or you won’t—more specifically, either his art will rip your fucking heart out of your chest and hug it, or you’ll be all ‘he’s weird’ and go watch something else. And I say ‘new favorite’ because if you enjoy the first thing of his you see, you will definitely quickly seek out and devour all of his things, and force close friends and lovers of yours to go through the same process so that you can watch them have the same reaction you did, as a way of sort of pinching yourself to make sure you’re not dreaming, and ‘not the only one’. And they will be grateful for you showing them the light. And you will be grateful for me showing you the light. And you’re welcome.