July 28, 2012
The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
For straight men playing gay men in drag, these three are remarkably uninhibited, especially Pearce, who struts around like a peacock with a wig collection as varied as its feathers. And Stamp manages to bring subtlety and graciousness to a role that could very easily have turned into pure camp. He's grieving over the loss of his partner, and agrees to accompany the other boys for a change of scenery, never suspecting it may lead to new opportunities romantically speaking, when he meets an incredulously open-minded rural mechanic, who's married to a kooky mail-order-bride who herself likes to put on a show at the local bar (after she's had too much to drink). Weaving's storyline, in which he's headed for a rekindling of his relationship with his young son, feels almost too carefully designed to tug at the heart strings, particularly when the boy is revealed to be far more open-minded than his father imagined he would be. At the same time, you have to hand it to writer-director Stephan Elliott, who knows when to be garishly offbeat and when to be subtle and unashamedly sweet. It's a welcome dose of eccentricity mixed with heart that most movies seem to have forgotten.
With Bill Hunter, Sarah Chadwick, and Mark Holmes. 1994.