I understand the difference between feature film and documentary, but this kind of pandering to an invisible public continues to drive me insane. Are the young people of America still so unsophisticated that Hollywood can’t risk telling authentic stories? From Band of Thebes,
The list of what I’d endure for Thebes does not extend to sitting through writer-director-star George Clooney’s “tepid” (USA Today), “lifeless” (Variety), “pandering” (NYT), “self-congratulatory” (AV Club), “failure” (EW, which gave it a C-) of “threadbare formula and sentimental cliches” (Wash Post), The Monuments Men, so I can’t report the exact extent to which he’s degayed the real men and women who rescued art stolen by the Nazis. One clue can be found here: The character based on the imposing, six-foot, broad-shouldered uber queer Lincoln Kirstein age 38 in May 1945 is played by five-foot-five, 68 year-old Bob Balaban who in these interviews says he didn’t study Kirstein for his role as “Preston Savitz” and no Q or A mentions anything gay. Nor do critics. Balaban hints “many of his key characteristics weren’t necessarily written into my part of the movie.” But he’s small and sensitive and struggles to climb a wall and he’s the only one of them who wears spectacles, so audiences will get it, right? Why be honest about actual gay heroics in history when you can rely on stale signifiers and sissy stereotypes?