Shortbus (2006)


These bitches sucking cock and eating ass… then they show up at the buffet and say they’re vegan.

— Justin Bond

I am familiar with John Cameron Mitchell’s work, thoroughly enjoying his transsexual rock musical, Hedwig and the Angry Inch. I eagerly wanted for his follow-up. Now, we have Shortbus. It’s not going to be a classic film, but a suitable one.

The focus of film is on Jaime (PJ Deboy) and James’ (Paul Dawson) relationship. They have been together for five years that are thinking about opening up their relationship. James is severely depressed. James carries around a video camera to record his life for a pet project of his that he is keeping secret from Jaime.

They go to see Dr. Sofia Lin (Sook-Yin Kim), a couple’s counselor that is having trouble achieving an orgasm from her husband, Rob (Raphael Barker). The couple tells Sofia about a sex club called “Shortbus”. Justin Bond is the mistress of the club that shows Sofia around the place.

She befriends Severin (Lindsay Beamish), a dominatrix that is looking for a meaningful relationship. They try to fix each other’s problems.

Jaime and James find a possible third partner in their relationship, Ceth (Jay Brannan). They should be happy, right? Nothing is, as it seems. There is a neighbor across the way that is obsessed with James, Caleb (Peter Stickles).

The movie tackles the topic of relationships and all that comes along with that; love, commitment, monogamy and sex. It’s infamously known that the unknown actors had un-simulated sex in the movie. I think that Mitchell wanted to have an honest portrayal of what two people is thinking, feeling, acting in a couple. You cannot shy away from sex. It’s a part of life and we should not be a afraid of it.

The core message of the film is connection in whatever configuration that might be. That tired saying, “find your bliss” can be applied here.

I understand Mitchell’s intentions with the film. I enjoyed two-thirds of this film, but the last falls off the rails into some weird shit.

Judgment: If you want to see somebody sing the national anthem into somebody’s ass, watch this film.

Rating: ***1/2


About Branden

Branden: I am just your average movie nut that reviews films. Gives his take on pop culture and Hollywood happenings. Dreams to have his own thriving website and make a living doing what he is passionate about.

Posted on October 8, 2009, in 2006, Comedy, Drama, GLBT, Independent, Rauchy, Romantic, Subversive and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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