After almost a year since I saw the trailer for Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor’s gay love story I Love You, Phillip Morris I finally got to go see it in theaters. Even after the success of Brokeback Mountain, gay themed films are still having trouble getting distributed.
Morris was originally supposed to be released on April 30th in North America, but due to some supposed “graphic sex” scenes the movie was indefinitely postponed. Luckily, distributer Consolidated Pictures Group has decided the film should see an North American release on June 30th. I say North American, because the film has already been released in Europe (one of the many advantages of living abroad, he he).
Mark that day down in your calendar, because this movie was great. The film ultimately boils down to the love between two men, and how far one will go to make the other happy. It’s very sweet.
Based on the real life story of con artist Steven Jay Russell and the love of his life, Phillip Morris (no relation to the cigarette company), I Love You, Phillip Morris gives both Carrey and McGregor a venue to showcase their acting prowess. I love when Carrey gets roles where he doesn’t have to please everyone. This movie is silly enough at times to allow him to use slapstick comedy that only he can do so well, but also shows us the side of him that made Man in the Moon, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind so emotional.
This movie is extremely clever at times. The fact that they were able to get me to care about two prisoners, and the love they shared between them is quite impressive. I’ll admit it. I cried a bit in this movie. I laughed a lot more though.
A lot of the story revolves around Russell’s numerous escapes from prison. In real life, Russell’s IQ was estimated to be around 160, although some of his escapes rely more on the guard’s stupidity. I urge you not to read too much about the real life story of Russell and Morris before seeing the movie though, as there are a few twists that are a treat to figure out during the watching of the movie.
Although McGregor’s character, Phillip Morris, is named right in the title, he’s more of a supporting character. He does gay pretty authentically. That sounds sort of weird, I mean, a dick in the mouth would be more authentic, but his mannerisms are noticeably dainty, without being overly dramatic. The movie is all Carrey’s though. His performance is one of his best.
I again, really urge you to go see this movie as soon as possible. Hopefully it will be a box office success to show that there is an audience for well written gay-character driven movies.