Thursday, July 28, 2005

Repertory watch/ICA

victimThe ICA (see links) shows between Friday 29/7 and Thursday 4/8 the classic British film Victim (1961). The film stars Dirk Bogarde in a mould-breaking performance that saw the star morphe from matinee idol into the archetypal tormented, closeted homosexual faster than George Michael could zip up his trousers in that LA public toilet. The film was directed by Basil Dearden and features Bogarde in the role of Melville Farr, a closeted gay lawyer at a time when homosexual acts were still a crime in the UK. It's amazing to think that Bogarde had been anything but a gay icon in his lifetime, but then after Victim he starred in the super-camp Modesty Blaise (the original Austin Powers) in which his last scene shows him, the villain of this cartoonish film, clamped down on the desert ground, yelling 'champagne, champagne.' And then of course, his starring role in Visconti's Death In Venice consolidated his place in history as one of the most memorable screen queer presences.

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