Review: ‘Bi the Way’

A once-over-lightly examination of an alleged cultural phenomenon, "Bi the Way" recalls the classic joke among journalists regarding what constitutes a trend.

A once-over-lightly examination of an alleged cultural phenomenon, “Bi the Way” recalls the classic joke among journalists regarding what constitutes a trend (punchline: two facts, and a reporter on deadline). Documakers Brittany Blockman and Josephine Decker travel cross-country with the ostensible goal of sussing out whether bisexuality is a long-term way of life or just a temporary “roadside attraction” for subjects of varying demographics. Even with sporadic input from academics and anthropologists, however, facile pic never impresses as anything more than a collection of random — and not necessarily representative — anecdotes.

Some interviewees — most notably, Village Voice gadfly Michael Musto — claim the very notion of bisexuality is suspect, and may indeed be a cop-out self-description by gay men and women reluctant to venture out of the closet. But others (including many identified only by first names) insist they’re indiscriminately attracted to same- or opposite-sex encounters. “Bi the Way” unproductively spends too much time focused on the 11-year-old son of gay indie filmmaker Jonathan Caouette (“Tarnation”). The precocious child’s juvenile ramblings are not at all illuminating, and his very presence in the pic may strike some as borderline exploitative.

Bi the Way

Production

A Third Room Prods. production. Produced by Michael Huffington, Martha Shane. Directed, written by Brittany Blockman, Josephine Decker.

Crew

Camera (color, HD), Nils Benson, Wilmot Kidd; editors, Blockman, Decker, Matt Clarke; music, Daniel Raimi. Reviewed on DVD, Houston, March 26, 2008. (In SXSW Film Festival -- Special Screenings.) Running time: 89 MIN.

With

Michael Musto, Lisa Diamond, Jonathan Caouette, Josh Caouette.

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