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Danny in the Sky

Examining nuances of masculinity, sexuality and physical worship as a substitute for love, "Danny in the Sky" distills its provocative points into banal melodrama. Denis Langlois' turgid tale of a beautiful youth struggling with his sexual and emotional identity ultimately becomes too silly to sustain dramatic credibility.

With:
With: Thierry Pepin, Veronique Jenkins, Jessie Beaulieu, Daniel Lortie, Caroline Portelance, Eric Cabana.

Examining nuances of masculinity, sexuality and physical worship as a substitute for love, “Danny in the Sky” distills its provocative points into banal melodrama. Slickly packaged and stacked with enough beefcake to pump video sales, Denis Langlois’ turgid tale of a beautiful youth struggling with his sexual and emotional identity ultimately becomes too silly to sustain dramatic credibility. It has the distinction, however, of being possibly the only drama to explore father-son friction via lap-dancing.

Emotionally encumbered straight hunk Danny (Thierry Pepin) has a conflicted relationship with his gay father (Eric Cabana), who suppressed his sexuality to give his son a “normal” upbringing; and a fixation on his glamorous model mother, who died of an overdose. Danny leaves home and quits college to pursue modeling. Betrayal and disenchantment prompt him to abandon the runway and work as a stripper and then on a porn shoot, where his troubled romance with a voyeuristic photographer (Veronique Jenkins) flowers in time for tragedy to strike. Lacking even one sympathetic character, the script reflects on how environment can shape perceptions of sexuality, but provides too little psychological depth to give heft to the argument.

Danny in the Sky

Production: A Cinema Libre Distribution (Canada)/Picture This! Entertainment (U.S.) release of a Les Prods. Castor & Pollux production. Produced by Bertrand Lachance, Denis Langlois. Directed by Denis Langlois. Screenplay, Langlois, Bertrand Lachance.

Crew: Camera (color), Stefan Ivanov; editor, Natacha Dufaux; music, Simon Wayland, Peter Xirogiannis, Phil York; production designer, Christian Legare; costume designer, Corinne Montpetit. Reviewed at NewFest: New York Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, June 12, 2003. French dialogue. Running time: 88 MIN.

With: With: Thierry Pepin, Veronique Jenkins, Jessie Beaulieu, Daniel Lortie, Caroline Portelance, Eric Cabana.

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