One of the most groundbreaking films about the LGBT community is now in a theater near you. And what’s more, it’s been critically acclaimed. The sad news is that Sony Classic Films, like other film companies, doesn’t seem to realize that you, as a consumer, should be advertised to just as it advertises to other segments of society.
The film, “Love is Strange,” is pioneering in that it deals with a subject that our community is just beginning to deal with: LGBT seniors and homelessness.
The film focuses on a gay couple — one retired, the other a teacher in a Catholic school — who marry after 39 years together. The school fires the teacher and all of a sudden the couple finds they don’t have the funds to afford the co-op they have lived in for 20 happy years.
They have to rely on family members and friends to put them up, each living in a separate home. After 39 years, these loving men are separated, and yes, homeless. They’re sleeping on a sofa, or in an extra bunk bed, but they’re living without their partner or support system and in a world that really is alien to them.
The film is emotional, and it made me angry. First at our own community, which hasn’t stepped up to the plate as yet to deal with these issues. A community takes care of its own! And it reminds me of a guy who, during the process of the planning for the John C. Anderson Apartments, stood up and yelled, “If you put a senior building on top of the community center, no one in their 20s will ever come there again.” That’s called ageism, another issue we have to begin to fight in this community.
But last is the fact that Sony Pictures hasn’t even promoted the film in LGBT media. They feel they’ll reach their market by going to mainstream. Imagine saying that to the Latino or African-American communities. It’s a line from the 1960s, when we were supposed to be invisible.
The point is that this film is invisible to many LGBT people who might have bought a ticket if they knew about it.