Personally, I found it sort of sweet but overall, not believable. Boy, am I glad I wasn't born in that time.
Yes, i did.
I've never seen it. I don't know why, but I just don't have a desire to.
r1, details, please. What did you like about it?
To this day I have never been as deeply affected by a work of art as I was by Brokeback Mountain.
I secretly judge people their reactions to it. It's a reliable litmus test of friend-worthiness.
Having grown up in Utah in the 1950s and 1960s, I found it totally believable. It must be hard for someone younger who grew up in a more progressive environment to understand the fear and isolation that dominated Ennis' life. You probably had to live in that part of the world at that time to grasp it fully. That said, I liked the movie a lot. It touched me deeply. I saw it several times.
I liked it as a period piece, as well as the Heath-Jake (don't recall their character names) story. Heath was better than I thought he would be. I loved Michelle Williams' performance as well. Anne and Jake were good too, but not as good as Michelle and especially Heath.
I thought it was overwrought. It got a lot of mileage out of appealing to an audience that felt watching the movie gave them a reason to pat themselves on the back.
Lesbians cannot write realistic gay male love stories. Patricia Nell Warren proved this. Annie Proux just provided a reminder.
Whats not to like? Great acting, good story line, cinematography. It still is one of the very few mainstream Hollywood movies about same-sex love which makes it a treasure.
And it definitely deserved the win over Crash, one of the least deserving best picture winners.
I liked Crash, R8, but I think BM was a more consistent movie.
[quote]Lesbians cannot write realistic gay male love stories. Patricia Nell Warren proved this. Annie Proux just provided a reminder.
Annie Proux isn't a lesbian.
Okay, then...biological women.
I saw it when it first came out. From the hype, I expected to be devastated, smelling salts and all. I thought it was a good movie, but didn't fall into a heap crying.
A couple of years ago, I watched it again. I don't know why, but it really got me and I got all teary.
I think the reason Brokeback worked was because of the casting. There was a purity to the way they interpreted those characters. They were both in their prime and beautiful. Two golden boys. It gave the narrative extraordinary power IMO. I've probably seen it more than a half dozen times, but at a certain point I've had to stop watching it. It was just painfully sad.
I liked it, but then again, I like a Gershwin tune.
Excellent movie. It resonated partly because the country had not progressed very far at the time it came out.
Yes, I didn't go gaga over it, but a beautiful film.
Honestly, I thought it was a bore. I know I should have liked it, but I just didn't.
Thought Gyllenhaal and Hathaway were dreadful, but Ledger and Williams were good.
I thought it was pretty overrated and a bit of a bore. WAY more better and daring movies about gay relationships, mostly in European cinema. The US is a bit behind on all things gay. Heath Ledger was visibly uncomfortable doing those scenes.
Honestly, I also judge people by their opinion of the movie, r4. The younger they are, the more forgiving I am, because the movie captures what it is like to live in the closet from the inside. It is both stark and romantic, and there is no element that is short of perfect (Gyllenhaal is a tad shallow, but I'll deal). To miss its beauty is really to miss life.
I liked the cast, I loved the story, but I thought the film was poorly executed. Whoever was responsible for hair & make up, and honestly, I think Ang Lee is overrated as a director.
It was especially telling for Jake and Anne Hathaway. With Michelle Williams, it was easy to make her look like a bitter,sullen, dumpy housewife, old before her time.
Heath brought a physicality to his character so the slumped shoulders and the shuffling gate were part of who he was. But they did a piss poor job of aging Jake with that stupid mustache, and Anne's brassy wigs were very contrived and artificial looking.
Neither one of them aged convincingly, and it wasn't their fault. I thought all four did an excellent job acting their parts. I just thought they were not well served by the production.
That it was made at all, generated large audiences, and achieved the critical success it did, is amazing. It was a mainstream, gay male love story that was sold to mainstream audiences, and almost took Best Picture.
The sad truth is that it changed nothing. TV has come a long way since 2005, with gay teens, gay parents, gay marriages, and we're part of public life.
But you'd never know it from feature films. If anything, we've lost ground: there were some wonderful (and more forgettable) G&L themed indie movies made in the early part of that decade. No one is making (or financing) those stories anymore. Gays and lesbians have basically disappeared from feature films, except as occasional comic relief.
Couldn't get past the mawkish soundtrack.
I couldn't get past Ledger mumbling all his lines. Perhaps if I watched it with the sound off it might hold more appeal. I also thought it was slow and rather boring. The scene in the tent and the wife confronting Innis about her suspicions being the only parts that I really paid attention to. Oh, well. It's showing tonight at midnight on Showtime. Maybe I'll give it another ganders.
Overall, I thought it was a great film. Heath was simply heartbreaking. I do think Jake was in over his head a bit. He was fine as the fresh faced youth in the beginning of the film, but he didn't have the chops to age and mature like the script called for. He wasn't horrible, but it took away from the film, IMHO. I actually loved both Anne and Michelle equally.
I thought the penetration scenes were pretty hot.. Oops...I thought you were discussing "Broke My Back Mounting". Never mind. Wrong movie.
R20 - I thought they aged Michelle well.
Yeah, I really did like it. It maybe wasn't as transcendent for me as for some other gays, but yeah, I liked it. Good flick.
It was a bore and Heath Ledger should have come with subtitles.
I loved it. I saw it in the theater three times. I own it on DVD.
I grew up in the Bible belt in the 70's and 80's. I found the oppressive atmosphere and the closeted gay response extremely accurate to that time. If you can't relate, be glad.
It's on showtime right now.
Call me a Mary!, but it's the only movie that makes me cry every time I watch it. The ending with the shirts just gets to me.
smell those musky hairy holes
R23, the mumbling is in the original short story. I thought it was well done.
Gyllenhaal and Ledger, directed by Ang Lee did their best as three straight men could be expected, i guess, to portray gay in this movie. The sex scenes, as brief and implied as they are, come across as too frantic to ring true. Young and inexperienced, Ennis, even if horny, would not likely have jumped on Jack and crammed it in him dry like a prison rape. He was always shy and this first encounter would be slower and tentative. The first time would have involved touching, petting, making out. And he would have considered that amazing. I mean this as a small criticism of an incredibly moving film.
R35, did you read the short-story?
Ennis was more than horny r35, he had suppressed his feelings for Jack with all his might. It was the ultimate taboo, people could get killed for it. He wasn't going to give into it, but when he finally did, it was like a dam bursting, out of control lust. And Jack offered himself to Ennis, so it's not like Ennis didn't know he wanted it.
Who does does that their first time? I agree he was ready to blow, and some intimate touching would have put him over the top. Did any of you fuck like that on your first time ever? It just didn't ring true to me when I watched it the first time.
I don't compare my own experiences to cowboys in 1960s Wyoming. Someone like Ennis would have a level of repression far beyond what most gay people have experienced.
I would have directed that scene differently.
I liked it so much that I bought the DVD and have watched it umteen times.
[quote]Lesbians cannot write realistic gay male love stories.
It wasn't a gay love story, it was a bisexual one.
They're definitely not bisexual. They're both blatantly unsatisfied by their heterosexual partners.
It was so sad, umpteen times would have put me into a depression.
I'm going to agree to disagree.
I don't like to cry at movies, so I controlled myself. Then in the parking lot, I found myself crying in uncontrollable sobs. I can't recall crying like that before.
I never cried at a movie like BBM before either. All gay people can relate to the oppressive effect homophobia has had in their lives. I cried more for me than them, I thought it was healthy to get it out of my system. I doubt it'd have the same effect on me now, but I haven't seen it since 2005 because it was so sad. I can't believe it's been nearly 10 yrs now.
We don't need another ultra-sad hit gay movie for awhile though. Even a stupid romcom starring a gay couple, would be more revolutionary now.
I'm watching it on Showtime right now. I forgot how visually beautifully it was shot.
No, I found the entire enterprise incredibly disappointing. Cute but callow and bland Jake Gyllenhaal was completely miscast and out of his depth as an actor and although Heath Ledger had a much better grip on his character I found his performance one dimensional, mannered and mumbling. Add to that the two of them had absolutely NO chemistry and the result to me is a very unconvincing romantic "relationship". Not hot. Imagine a young Tommy Lee Jones as Ennis paired with an equally intense actor like a young Martin Sheen and the screen would have COMBUSTED.
For a recent mainstream film directed by a straight man that much more convincingly portrays a tortured gay relationship check out J.Edgar. Leonardo DiCaprio and Armie Hammer sizzle as the star crossed lovers. The sexual and romantic tension between the two is palpable and potent...and VERY poignant. I totally bought them as a couple and have never wanted two people to get together so much in a movie. I credit the actors and filmmakers for making the audience feel the longing they felt for each other. If you can get past the terrible "old man" makeup and some of DiCaprio's jejune early line readings you may find the movie ultimately satisfying.
Very angst-ridden (in an adult way); very heart-wrenching. I personally know a lot of gays who found it slow and unmoving, and from the extent of comparing it to a satisfying, modern, gay-affirming movie like "Shelter", I understand their PoV. The plot was slow. There wasn't a lot of gay romance or sex. But that wasn't its goal. I think it spoke to the heartbreak of gay romance in a way that many young people in the web-based 21st century [thankfully] can't comprehend.
As an aside, Linda Cardellini, in under 5 minutes of screen-time, absolutely schools on how to make the most of a limited role. I kinda felt for Heath in how much she out-acted him in their scenes.
I loved it but have only seen it a few times since the first time. Too sad especially considering Ledger.
The character of Ennis was a bit of a puzzle. Annie Proulx described him as a "one-man man", a somewhat ambiguous definition; was he a monogamous gay man, loyal to his one true love to death, or was he a basically heterosexual man who "turned gay" only for love of Jack? (Does human sexuality work this way? Who am I to say that it doesn't? Sexuality is nothing if not irrational). The character of Jack I read as gay, who married for financial security and found the gay sex he wanted on the side.
Don't forget about the music for the film either, it played a huge role.
I didn't like the seduction scene at all. Waking up in the middle of the night angry because the other man has thrown his hand across you in your sleep and then suddenly deciding to spit on your hand for lube and fuck the man on the spur of the moment---that is hardly the basis of a lifelong love affair.
If it had started with Jake's character carefully bringing up the subject and offering to give Heath's character his first BJ, and then gradually progressing to fucking over a couple of days, then it would have been a credible movie.
It's OK. I found it slow. I also couldn't relate to the deeply closeted nature of the characters. I understand this represents the times and environment the characters were in, but I still can't relate, which as another poster wrote is a good thing.
It's a movie. All art is seen through a subjective lens. As the posts reveal, the movie appeals to some and not to others. I can't stand it when someone freaks out if they find out you found the movie just a bit meh.
r54 wants Brokeback as co-written by Nifty authors and Barbara Cartland.
I feel that the sex fit the circumstances. Some of these slow seductions posters are mentioning would work for a modern day romance, but wouldn't be believable for a couple of closeted cowboys in the 60's.
As a Wyoming native, I totally got the repression--I've known many men like Ennis and Jack. Personally, I felt the women's roles were too prominent in the film (they barely existed in the Proulx story). Surprisingly, the movie has a more upbeat ending than the short story--Proulx's version just ends, hopeless and bleak. At least at the end of the film, you get the sense that Ennis is not completely alone in the world after his visit from Alma Jr.
The wigs were too brassy and the line readings were jejune!
DL movie critic
[quote]The character of Ennis was a bit of a puzzle. Annie Proulx described him as a "one-man man", a somewhat ambiguous definition; was he a monogamous gay man, loyal to his one true love to death, or was he a basically heterosexual man who "turned gay" only for love of Jack? (Does human sexuality work this way? Who am I to say that it doesn't? Sexuality is nothing if not irrational). The character of Jack I read as gay, who married for financial security and found the gay sex he wanted on the side.
I think "a monogamous gay man". Ennis was so repressed, he only came out for Jack and that was hard work. He wasn't going to do it for just anyone.
I re-watched it last year and it was better than I'd remembered.
It was a well-told, well-acted love story. The relationship between Jack and Ennis is believable and tragic.
One of the most powerful scenes was when Ennis visits Jack's parents at the end. It's heartbreaking.
Also, Anne Hathaway's telephone scene is amazing.
I loved it. couldn't believe that Ledger, whom I had a huge crush on, agreed to play the part. The music was specially haunting and beautiful
For those who insist that women can't write stories about gay men should note that the screenplay (which is what we're talking about) was written by a straight man, Larry McMurtry, and his partner, Diana Ossana.
What r43 said. Ennis and Jack are not bisexual. They're gay.
All four of the principal roles were superbly acted. He's a source of derision here but I thought Gyllenhaal was excellent, especially in the scene where he and the character of Randall deside to hook-up.
It was a "good" movie, but not more than that. I wasn't upset that it didn't win Best Picture. I preferred both Crash and Capote.
It was well acted and moving, certainly, but it was also painfully slow and often just boring.
I grew up in Montana so I appreciated the setting and the gorgeous cinematography. I can relate to the repressiveness of the time; in fact, I can relate to the repressiveness so much that I always had a hard time believing that Jack and Ennis would ever come together at all. It was too much of a leap for me to believe that same-sex love would ever be expressed at that time (hell, it would still be an issue today). Gay sex would have been relegated to brief, anonymous truck-stop / restroom / book store encounters-- and that's about it. NO WAY would have progressed to repeated meetings and ongoing discussion of a relationship and love.
I didn't hate the movie, but have never been comfortable with the idea that it captured the time time well. I think it was an impossible story for the time and place it is set in.
Oh deer- "...decide to hook-up."
I liked it, I really did. But it pissed me off, too: Another gay man dead at the end of the film. I had to re-watch Maurice to get the taste out of my mouth.
Hasn't Proulx said he was based on a story she had heard?
But even if not, r65, you are able to say that nothing like this ever happened? Never ever? NO WAY? Wow, You must be God.
[quote]One of the most powerful scenes was when Ennis visits Jack's parents at the end. It's heartbreaking.
I agree. This is where I get teary.
I think it is made absolutely clear that Ennis is not gay. Remember the scene where Ennis has sex with Alma. He definitely isn't thinking of her (I felt a bit sorry for her then).
It was Same time Next Year with Sodomy.
[quote]Hasn't Proulx said he was based on a story she had heard?
She said it was based on a cowboy she observed looking longingly at another man in a Wyoming bar. Her imagination took it from there.
[quote]I think it is made absolutely clear that Ennis is not gay. Remember the scene where Ennis has sex with Alma. He definitely isn't thinking of her (I felt a bit sorry for her then).
I don't follow. It's made clear that he prefers to have anal sex with her.
Or was that just made clear in the short story? Now I can't remember the differences between the story and the film.
r68, Proulx said that she was in a bar in Wyoming and saw an older man observing a young beautiful male. Now, in and of itself, big deal, but it motivated her to create BBM.
At least, that's what I recall when she was interviewed about the story.
[quote]Gay sex would have been relegated to brief, anonymous truck-stop / restroom / book store encounters-- and that's about it. NO WAY would have progressed to repeated meetings and ongoing discussion of a relationship and love.
You've apparently missed the spate of recent stories spotlighting long-term gay couples. We're talking 40, 50, 60 years together -- and some of them are even from (gasp!) flyover country.
Beautiful movie. The beauty of the scenery adds to the sadness of the tale. Heath Ledger was a great actor. The scenes that resonate with me are the domestic scenes between Ennis and his wife at Christmas, the Thanksgiving dinner at Jack's home, where there is the power struggle between Jack and his father-in-law, and the kitchen scene when Ennis visits Jack's parents. Each sum up the struggle of Jack and Ennis to be themselves and to be men. There is the tiny measure of reconciliation of the struggle at the end where Ennis acknowledges his love for Jack.
Cry every time I see it.
I saw it opening weekend at the local art theater's big room. Huge theater and a huge portion of the local gay community filled up the 7 pm show. Odd to see a movie in an old time large theater full of people you know, and I think that made difference.
Obviously the cinematography was amazing. But when Ennis pulled those shirts out of the back of the closet, the room was filled with hundreds of men and women, gay and straight, sobbing loudly.
Never experienced anything like it before or since.
I thought the strangest part of the whole thing was that Anne Proulx wrote Brokeback Mountain a year before Matthew Shepard was murdered near her ranch. She was called on to be on the jury.
"Her short story "Brokeback Mountain," which contains a character who is killed in a Wyoming gay-bashing, was published in The New Yorker in 1997, almost exactly one year before the real-life murder of gay Wyoming man Matthew Shepard. Proulx, who lived close to where Shepard was beaten, was called to but not selected for jury duty for the trial of Shepard's murders."
I did not see it that Ennis was having anal sex with Alma. What I saw was that he preferred the doggie-style position, but there was no indication that he was putting it in the asshole. He was wanting to have more children, so why would he use the asshole? When she told him that she would have more children when he earned enough money to support them, that gave him the excuse to end the sexual relationship with her. The lack of education, and inability of Ennis to earn much money is a big theme of this movie, while the homosexuality seems to be all that anyone talks about. Homosexual men getting married, having children, and living a double life remains commonplace where I live. There is more than one in my own personal family, and one of them has been a Pentecostal minister for 50 years.
[quote]I don't follow. It's made clear that he prefers to have anal sex with her.
Oops - I meant: In that scene it is made absolutely clear that he IS gay (not bi). I get the impression that that is how it mostly was between them. It's not just the act, but the fact that he obviously doesn't want to look her in the eye, or think of her while he's doing it. There's no connection between them.
Like many of you, I thought it was just okay. I can't really put my finger on why I didn't like it more. The cinematography was outstanding, the acting was fine. I think the story just dragged a bit.
It makes me sad that there aren't more really good gay movies. We watched "Another Gay Movie" a couple of weeks ago and we enjoyed it although it would hardly qualify as a mainstream movie and it plays off stereotypes in a way that not everyone would appreciate. We also watched "Big Gay Musical" and hated it.
[quote]the epitome of bi
Oh, god, not the "epitome of bi" troll again. We thought you were dead.
What r81 said.
Ennis never looks at Alma throughout that entire bedroom scene. His eyes are closed the entire time, even when he turns his head to return her kisses.
That's superb direction by Ang Lee.
The notion that Ennis and Jack are bisexual is plain wrong. They're gay.
I thought it was goofy, self-important, very actor-y and featured really bad wigs. The Oscar noms, and Datalounge fanaticism baffled me. Instantly forgettable movie.
I loved it. It was a subtle, quiet but powerful movie.
Unlike CRASH! Crash was so forced and didactic.
I rewatched it, and the wigs they put on Hathaway were truly awful.
Never watched it. I loved the original story too much to pollute my memory of it with Hollywood's version.
What's not to like about the film? Beautiful cinematography. Acting was solid. Should have won the Oscar.
Have never seen it. Maybe one day, but am done for now with the gay=death movies. I much prefer something like SHELTER.
[quote]I rewatched it, and the wigs they put on Hathaway were truly awful.
Really? I thought the wigs were perfect for a lady from Dallas in the 60s. Especially that big blonde beehive at the end.
What -- they couldn't move to New York and get married in those days.
The working title was "Same Time, Next Queer".
Did you know ...
"Law of Desire" had more of an impact on me.
The elephant in the room, and the real reason many of you so called sophisticates didn't like it, was because it showed an impoverished desperate America, which is actually the real America and how most of America has always been: struggling, lacking choices, lonely, and mean.
The cheesiness for 1970s Texas was deliberate and accurate, no different from "Urban Cowboy."
The main problem is the pretense that those days were long ago and those attitudes quite gone. They are leaving, but in 2006 the progress in the US on gay issues could be measured in inches, not miles.
So true. So true.
I almost could not understand Heath Ledger's character for most of the movie. I found his portrayal pretty awful and that ruined the movie for me. Jake was terrific and deserved a better partner for such an important movie for it's time.
I hated that Hollwood took a pass to follow Brokeback Mountain with all sorts of gay themed movies. Every fucking success gets ripped off and redone in variations to jump on the popularity bandwagon, but a successful gay movie? No, that kind of movie genre is way too risky to invest money into for Hollywood.
People who don't understand that gay men will at times have sex with women...those people are retarded. YES! I said RETARDED.
It was a beautiful film, with a subtle and heartbreaking psychology behind it. I don't think of it as a "gay" movie. It's implications move far beyond the obvious.
The superficial "Gaga Gaylings" would be sorely pressed to feel the range of emotions in all the characters. Not only the two protagonists, but the women as well. Perhaps when they become "eldergays", whom they love to ridicule, they may develope a sense of understanding and empathy that goes beyond the scope of "self." .. Although, I doubt it.
Not really. I think Jack might've had the teeniest bit of a clue that things might've been better in a big city, but he never even mentioned it. Since he was the engine of change, if there had been any change, I thought it might eventually come up even as a discarded, "Aw, we can't move to New York City, Jack," but no. Nothing.
I liked Crash better. But a movie with Matt Dillon, Loretta Devine, and Ryan Phillippe, well, how the hell much better can you get than that?
Yes, there any many gay men married to women, have children and play around on the side with other men. There's not usually emotional connection with those men, mostly sexual. They are with women not only to hide their sexuality but they prefer the traditional family with a mother and father. As long as the wife is ok with that, who's to say that's wrong? I actually prefer that to heterosexual men who cheat on their wives with other women the wife knows nothing about it. That's what I call sleazy.
From the bleak opening images and the simple guitar notes, I knew we were in for something special. And it was. The aching loneliness has never been better captured and the regret for a life of untaken opportunities has never been more heartbreaking.
It was beautiful to look at and anchored by two very good performances by Heath Ledger and Michelle Williams. Gyllenhaal and Hathaway were terrible, though.
I think a huge part of the film's success as a cultural "moment" came down to the public's ignorance as to how gay people lived prior to the sexual revolution. The straights found it shocking and horrifying because prior to that point, Hollywood really hadn't depicted what the closet was like in those days.
I don't get why some people are so militant about this movie. My ex was furious when I told him I thought it was just OK. I didn't say I hated it, just that I didn't love it. He went on and on about how great it was and how could I say that. Well, I pointed out to him that he liked every gay movie ever made, no matter how bad it sucked. I had said leading up to the Oscars that I preferred Crash over Brokeback and when Crash won, he acted mad at me for two days. Ugh, so glad he's my ex.
I actually thought the movie, "Torch Song Trilogy" had a much sweeter love story about a gay relationship. The fact that the main character was a drag queen turned many people away, but the emotions of the characters were as real, if not more so, than any from BBM.
The wigs are too brassy!
DL movie queen
One of my favorite movies. I've seen it 3x, and now want to see it again thanks to this thread.
Hey OP, 2005 called. What other old news you interested in?
"Gay sex would have been relegated to brief, anonymous truck-stop / restroom / book store encounters-- and that's about it. NO WAY would have progressed to repeated meetings and ongoing discussion of a relationship and love."
That's why it was a book and a movie. Because things happened that don't happen in real life...
Some people, honestly.
r102, so true. And CL is full of their ads, looking for hook-ups with other married men.
Many of their ads state they want a good buddy to hunt, fish, do guys things with AND have both wives meet. Women cook the game the men hunt on their boys weekends alone.
They state that they will "play" when they are off doing guy things, with both wives no wiser.
It works for them.
I lived the story of Brokeback Mountain. It is very real to me. I was in Georgia instead of Wyoming, but so many scenes were right out of my life story, and I've met a number of other people who have said the same.
Brokeback Mountain is one of the greatest films ever made. Ang Lee is a genius. People will be studying how this brilliant film was made 100 years from now.
People around the globe feel it is one of the greatest things to come out of America.
R112 - Absolutely.
Still haven't seen it (I know). Looks like a downer.
Yes I liked it. Thought it was well done and important for the gay community but that's about it. I don't think it will be ever be thought of as one of the greatest, not even close. It was fine and the performances were good. Its impact might be more towards inspiring gay filmmakers then changing anything.
Mixed feelings. I ended up thinking these guys were not that bright not to know that they could have moved to a bigger city and lived their lives more openly. I mean, this was not the 19th century or even the early twentieth century. I know all the explanations about them being isolated cowboys and times being different in terms of exposure to opportunities, yadda yadda. But the story was about their "tragic" love for each other when there WERE options. Had they never heard a disco song in the 70's or heard about San Francisco, at the very least? I think if the plot had had SOMETHING in it about moving and why it was or was not an option for them, or for at least ONE of them to find some happiness.
And, as I said, I could not relate to the story because I found the main characters to be rather dimwitted and unable to communicate, hence the lines like "I wish I could quit you." It sounded like something a mentally challenged person would say. I know that sounds hideously snarky and judgmental but, hey, when the story is about two UNEDUCATED and INARTICULATE cowboys who don't know shit about homosexuality when information WAS available, well...the entire story was flat for me. It was sad that they ended up with their fates, for sure, but more because of their finite, "flat earth" worlds/viewpoints and isolated existences in the middles of shitsville, nowhere USA in the later part of the 20th century to boot, than their homosexuality and unrequited "love."
What exactly was unbelievable about it, OP?
Well, you'd know from mentally challenged.
Heath Ledger could have done for acting in this century what Brando did in the 20th century.
It's a bloody shame he died.
They were not city guys. They had no clue of how to move to a big city or get a job there. They were uneducated. They didn't read about the changes developing in San Francisco. They also had no access to anyone anywhere telling them it was anything besides evil to be gay.
Jake's character was a little dim, but Heath's wasn't.
I agree with R120.
The sense of isolation on every level was one of the main points of the story. The fact that they were limited in their knowledge about the world and about their sexuality and there was no one to discuss it with.
Even Jack, who was the change agent, probably believed something was wrong with him. He accepted himself, and he knew there were other people like him, but I doubt he felt he was "normal" by society's standards, in the way he was supposed to be, according to the social environment he lived in.
Maybe, once he hit 40, if Jack had walked away from Ennis, had finally given him up and just decided to divorce his wife, and take off for California, or even Dallas or Austin, he might have had a shot at a life.
But neither guy was educated. Jack worked in his father-in-law's family business in sales, & Ennis was a ranch hand. By his own admission he barely made it thru 10th grade.
Who else was part of their larger world? Other ranch hands Ennis knew, or ranchers and businesspeople who knew Jack's in-laws?
Jack had a restless nature and an open personality that didn't handle subterfuge well. Ennis was psychologically in the fetal position, terrified of his own shadow.
It took Jack to bring him out of his shell, and his two daughters. Those were the only three people in his life he felt comfortable to be open with and he was always looking over his shoulder.
Honestly...I would have rather seen a movie about Jack and Randall or the rodeo clown.....Jake Gyllenhaal had MUCH better chemistry with those actors.
I love this article by Patricia Nell Warren (the Frontrunner) about cowboys...