Here are some movies to distract you as the planet burns to a crisp and the Supreme Court undoes every single civil rights development of the last 50 years. Off to the multiplex, we go!
Whitney (July 6) — The first bio film to be sanctioned by Whitney Houston’s (R.I.P.) estate, this exploration of Houston’s life, career, and tragic death features interviews with Houston’s ex-hubby Bobby Brown, as well as her mother Cissy, who says at one point, “You have three places to sing from: the heart, the mind and guts. She learned them all.” Brb, weeping.
Ant-Man and the Wasp (July 6) — Didn’t see Paul Rudd play gay for the 100th and 101st time in The Catcher Was a Spy and Ideal Home in June? No worries. You can see him in Ant-Man and the Wasp playing a tiny man with giant dick energy. There’s also Evangeline Lilly, who is one of the most lesbionic non-lesbians in Hollywood today.
Sorry to Bother You (July 6) — Written and directed by Boots Riley, a former leader of the Occupy Oakland movement and frontman of the legendary (trust) hip-hop group the Coup, Sorry to Bother You is quite woke. It starts as a workplace comedy, but quickly evolves into a surreal racial satire and capitalist critique with touches of dystopian science fiction. There are even jokes about code-switching, which will be familiar to any gay man who has turned his baseball cap backwards in a red state. Star Lakeith Stanfield stepped into it recently when he posted a homophobic, freestyle rap to Instagram. It was deleted and he later claimed he was rapping as a “character,” not himself. Ugh. Armie Hammer, Tessa Thompson and Omari Hardwick co-star.
Eighth Grade (July 13) — Yes, we’re including this movie because Bo Burnham, its first-time writer/director, is known for the song, “My Whole Family Thinks I’m Gay.” However, we’re also including it because it’s an unsettling cringe dramedy about a teenage girl struggling through her own Me Too moment in, you guessed it, eighth grade. Plus, this film is giving us major Welcome to the Dollhouse vibes which is a great thing.
Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot (July 13) — Gay men are on the periphery, as well as front and center, in this film about a paraplegic Portland cartoonist (Joaquin Phoenix) who finds solace in his art as he recovers from alcoholism. Co-starring Jonah Hill as a Jesus-haired, booty-shaking, wealthy AF gay man with a penchant for kimonos, Don’t Worry is a dazzling showcase for Phoenix and an inspiring tale of recovery in its own right. It’s also directed by Gus van Sant, the man behind Milk and My Own Private Idaho. (An exclusive Flagrant interview with van Sant is coming soon.)
Mamma Mia 2: Here We Go Again (July 20) — The questions we’ve all been asking are, “Is Meryl Streep dead?” and “What songs are they going to include?” Hopefully, the answers are, “Yes but she still sings five songs in ghost form” and “All of the same ones from the first movie, plus ‘Fernando.’”
Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood (July 27) — Why wouldn’t you want to see a documentary about Scotty Bowers, a man who acted as a human Grindr for A-list Tinseltown closet cases like Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant? We’re waiting. Flagrant will be posting a super dishy interview with Mr. Bowers prior to the release of this film.