Tag Archives: freak show

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

The best gay movies of 2018

Pink News
The best gay movies of 2018
Nick Duffy
December 31, 2018

Bette Midler in Freak Show

As 2018 draws to a close, PinkNews looks at the best gay films released across the year in queer cinema.

2018 saw gay movies break into the mainstream with Love, Simon and The Miseducation of Cameron Post, while plenty of other releases championed queer representation. We list the best gay movies with descriptions about them.


This vivid, vibrant love story from Kenyan director Wanuri Kahiu stars Samantha Mugatsia and Sheila Munyiva as the daughters of two rival political candidates, falling in love and navigating homophobia attitudes. ...  Read More

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Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Uk – Review: Freak Show review -an unapologetic celebration of self-identity 4 out 5 stars

The National Student Freak Show review -an unapologetic celebration of self-identity Charlotte Hunt at Southampton, University of 28th June 2018 Verdict: “If life kicks you, you just kick higher” – a film for those struggling to find their place.In an unapologetic celebration of individuality and identity, Freak Show delivers a highly relevant message in today’s society. The film follows genderqueer teenager Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther) as he navigates his way through a new, conservative High School. Along the way, Bloom encounters the cut-throat reality of unaccepting high school culture and decides to run for homecoming queen in defiance of those against him.Freak Show’s biggest strength is its central character and the undeniably passionate performance given by Alex Lawther. Known for his other roles as Billy Moon (Goodbye Christopher Robin), a young Alex Turing (The Imitation Game) and self-proclaimed psychopath James (The End of the F***cking World), Lawther once again steps into an ‘outcast’ type role, but by no means gives the same performance.Rather, his emotional and eccentric transformation into Billy Bloom proves his versatility and ability to dominate the screen regardless of who he is working alongside of – even the likes of Bette Midler – cementing himself well and truly within the surge of fresh new talent emerging in the industry. Likewise, the character of Billy Bloom will no doubt become a modern emblem of self-identity as he refuses to conform to the societal norms so prevalent in his conservative high school. It is his individuality in a sea of students begging to fit in that makes him so inspiring. From the off, an intimate and personal voice-over gives the viewer an exclusive insight into his world; one that he carries the audience through with ease, at least in terms of narrative structure. The film itself however, is by no means ‘easy viewing’.Freak Show tackles many important but challenging themes throughout its duration including issues of hate crime, the ignorance of, and intolerance towards the LGBTQ community, and broken family relationships, to name but a few. It approaches these topics through its expressive cinematography that does almost as much speaking as the characters themselves.Through choreographed character movements and beautiful juxtapositions, the film is both brutally honest and comedic – finding that balance very well. For the most part, this allows Billy’s journey to take a realistic path. He encounters highs and lows like any teenager does, giving the film an air of relatability, but the film also ensures it remains focused on the prejudice he faces for his non-conforming self-expression.These themes are slightly weakened by the film’s typically ‘feel good’ teen narrative that, at points, does become cliche and predictable. This predictability comes as a result of both an archetypal narrative structure, but also the scarier reality of how common stories like this – ones of LGBTQ hatred and intolerance – are, even in modern society. This narrative structure does, however, allow a high level of accessibility to an array of audience members so that although one may argue it takes an easy approach to challenging themes, it does allow the film’s message to be heard by a wider audience.Despite its predictable and somewhat cliche narrative, Freak Show teaches that being yourself and fitting in are never synonymous and that, to be truly happy, the former is the only option.
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Saturday, June 23, 2018


Attitude BETTE MIDLER SLAMS HOLLYWOOD FOR BEING AGEIST TOWARDS WOMEN The star revealed she was irritated not to be asked to return to the Hocus Pocus remake 2018-06-22 Bette Midler, portrait Bette Midler has slammed Hollywood for its ageist and sexist attitude to women. The iconic singer and actress has starred in a number of hit movies including The First Wives Club, Beaches and of course, Disney’s Hocus Pocus – plus she steals the show in her new movie Freak Show which is out today (June 22). However, news has began circulating about a remake of the 1993 hit Halloween favourite – which also starred Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Njamy – and although all the original stars, who played the Sanderson witches, are all up for returning to their iconic roles, the studio has decided to cast younger stars. And Midler, whose performance as Winifred Sanderson is iconic, admitted there will never be a sequel with the original cast because she believes there is a “vendetta” against women in Hollywood. In an exclusive interview in Attitude’s July issue, Midler says: “It’s so strange. It wasn’t a big hit when it came out, but it has certainly made its money back since. “They play it monthly, it’s huge. It doesn’t matter how many signals you send, they will not budge, but they are going to remake it with some younger people. I want to see that. “It’s beyond irritating. It’s unfair. The same is true of The First Wives Club. It’s almost as if there’s a vendetta. “You can’t have those kind of hits and not wonder why they don’t pick you up. They pick the men up.” Midler’s new film Freak Show is out now.
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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Video: Hey Qween! BONUS: James St James’ Big Hollywood moment With Bette Midler – Freak Show

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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

June Pride Month – Freak Show, The Movie, Gets Blu-Ray DVD Release – Alex Lawther. Bette Midler

No Reruns.net Freak Show Review By Kyle Nolan June 5, 2018 Bette Midler, Blue Pantsuit, Freak Show June is Pride Month, and to help celebrate, Shout! Factory and IFC Films have released the new teen dramedy Freak Show on Blu-ray & DVD. Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther, The End of the F***ing World, Howard’s End) isn’t like most other teenagers. He likes to glam things up, putting on wigs, dressing up in women’s clothes, and decking himself out in beads and feathers. When he was a child, Billy’s parents were constantly arguing, and eventually split up. The 7 years that followed were some of the happiest of Billy’s life. He spent all his time with his best friend, his Muv (Bette Midler). The two of them always had a grand time, dressing up and dancing. However, this came to a sudden end when his mother suddenly dropped him off at his father’s family estate while she headed off to some unknown destintion. Billy hardly knew anything about his “Daddy Downer” (Larry Pine, House of Cards), except that he didn’t approve of Billy’s lifestyle, and that Billy was not the son that he had always dreamed of having. Billy doesn’t really make a good first impression at his new school—as he walks down the halls dressed like a 1980s Boy George, he is met with stares and constant pointing, and everyone seems to have his or her phone out filming the freak show. Billy becomes the target of ridicule, a constant barrage of spitballs, and even violence, but his father doesn’t really have any sympathy, telling Billy that “the nail that sticks out gets hammered down”. Billy wants to leave town—while he’s been hated at school before, it’s never been by everyone. However, Billy soon meets a girl in the library (AnnaSophia Robb, Mercy Street, The Carrie Diaries) who fills him in on all the school gossip, and the two quickly become friends. He also strikes up an unlikely friendship with star football player Flip Kelly (Ian Nelson, There’s… Johnny!)—it was love at first sight when Billy first cast his eyes on Flip, even though Billy knows the feelings are one-sided. Despite making a couple of friends, Billy continues to struggle to fit in, and decides that he is going to shake things up by running for prom queen, against ultra-conservative/religious mean girl Lynette (Abigail Breslin, Scream Queens). I was first interested in checking out this movie when I saw that the lead was played by Alex Lawther. I had first seen him in the recent Netflix series The End of the F***ing World, and was really impressed with his work. Once again, Lawther completely commits himself to his role—this time an eccentric teenager who is happiest when he can just be free to be himself and dress and act the way he wants. Billy Bloom is an interesting character—sometimes I found him charming and interesting, while other times irritating and entitled. I found myself torn between being happy that he was being himself, but also wondering why he wouldn’t just tone down his attitude or way of dressing if it would make things easier for him at school. The film does explore this to some degree. When Billy is dressed in “normal” clothes, there’s definitely a spark that seems to be gone, but when he’s dressed up as say Zelda Fitzgerald while doing a book report in front of the class, he just comes to life. His attitude and way he dresses is a core part of him, and he doesn’t want to sacrifice that by pretending he’s something he’s not. I quite enjoyed some of the relationships in the film, especially the one between Billy and Trip. At first it seems like these two come from completely different worlds, but they share a common background of their fathers wanting them to be people they aren’t. The friendship they have is completely platonic, but still loving and supportive. I also enjoyed the relationship underappreciated housekeeper Florence (Celia Weston) has with both Billy and his father. She’s always there to listen to problems and talk some sense into these men. While the film does touch on some more serious topics such as bullying, hate speech and alcoholism, it does so at a very artificial level, and doesn’t get serious enough to really show the dangerous consequences of these. The film is in this middle area where it isn’t constantly laugh out loud funny (though it has its moments), or deadly serious. It tries to ride the line between the two, with varying degrees of success. The movie is basically broken into three distinct acts. In the first act, Billy is displaced from his fully-accepting household with his mother, and placed in a new, more conservative setting where he doesn’t fit in, and starts to face ridicule and verbal and physical abuse. In the second act, Billy opens up more and starts to experience moments of happiness and joy, but a couple of betrayals bring his world crashing down once again. And in the final act, Billy is reborn, finding and reclaiming a strength he didn’t know he had. Overall, Freak Show is an uplifting and sometimes funny story about just being one’s self without worrying what others think. It also features cameos from Laverne Cox as a reporter doing a story on the prom queen race, and John McEnroe as the school’s gym coach. Shout! Factory’s Blu-ray release provides picture that is, for the most part, clean and detailed, though occasionally some colors look slightly washed out. The audio track provides clear dialogue, and the surround channel is used effectively, such as in scenes where crowds are cheering and clapping during school assemblies. Unfortunately, the only bonus feature included on the disc is the film’s trailer. The disc comes packed in a standard Blu-ray keepcase with a cardboard slipcover. Blu-Ray DVD: What’s Included: Film: (1:30:58) 1080p / Widescreen 2.40:1 Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio Surround, English 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio Stereo Subtitles: English, Spanish Extras: Trailer (2:03) Final Thoughts: Overall, Freak Show is an entertaining film, with some great performances, but it seems a bit confused as to what tone it is aiming for. While the trailer seems to promote a comedy—and there are many funny moments—the film itself is more of a dramedy. It touches on some more serious topics, but glosses over the consequences of these. While the overall message of the film is positive, I think it could have been even more effective had it conveyed a little more of seriousness of the attacks on Billy (or just left this part out completely if it was going for a straight-up comedy). Shout! Factory’s Blu-ray release provides a solid presentation but lacks any bonus material. Due to this, I would suggest a rental before a blind buy.
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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Freak Show – UK Trailer – Has A Little More Bette Midler In This Trailer

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Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Shout! Factory Releasing ‘Freak Show’ on DVD June 5

Media Play News Shout! Factory Releasing ‘Freak Show’ on Disc June 5 JOHN LATCHER May 7, 2018 Freak Show, DVD Shout! Factory and IFC Films will release the coming-of-age drama Freak Show on Blu-ray and DVD June 5. The directorial debut of actress and producer Trudie Styler, Freak Show stars Alex Lawther, Bette Midler, Larry Pine, Abigail Breslin, Laverne Cox and AnnaSophia Robb. Lawther plays Billy Bloom, a gender-bending teenager who feels like a fish out of water at a conservative high school.

Blu-Ray DVD:

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Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Trudie Styler’s Freak Show starring Alex Lawther & Bette Midler gets a UK release date

Entertainment Focus Trudie Styler’s Freak Show starring Alex Lawther & Bette Midler gets a UK release date JASON PALMER August 29, 2018 Trudie Styler’s directorial debut Freak Show, starring Alex Lawther, AnnaSophia Robb, Abigail Breslin and Bette Midler gets a UK release date set. Based on the award-winning cult novel by James St James and rumoured to be in the same vein as Clueless and Napoleon Dynamite, Freak Show tells the moving, heart-breaking and hilarious story of Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther). Billy is a boldly confident and eccentric teenager who faces intolerance and persecution at his ultra conservative high school, and decides to fight back on behalf of all the misunderstood freaks of the world. Trudie Styler’s directorial bow Freak Show stars Alex Lawther (Ghost Stories) alongside Abigail Breslin, Bette Midler, Larry Pine, John McEnroe (Borg v McEnroe), AnnaSophia Robb and Laverne Cox and comes to cinemas across the UK and on demand on 22nd June through Maven Pictures. Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther), once lived a fabulous life in Connecticut, with his equally fabulous mother, MUV (Bette Midler). But when he is suddenly shipped off to his father’s (Larry Pine) Southern mansion, he finds himself a fish out of water. With his closet of extravagant and flamboyant attire, Billy is completely different from the cheerleaders, bible belles and beefy quarterbacks at his new high school. Yet despite the well-meant advice of his father and his housekeeper Florence (Celia Weston) that he should just throw on some blue jeans, Billy is determined to be himself – even if that does mean wearing face glitter to school. A rising British star, Alex Lawther won the London Film Critics’ Circle Award for “Young British Performer of the Year” for his role as the young Alan Turing in the Oscar-Winning film The Imitation Game (2014). Most recently, he was seen in Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror (2016), alongside Domnall Gleeson in Goodbye Christopher Robin (2017), and is currently the lead on the wildly popular Netflix Original show The End of the F***ing World (2017). Trudie Styler is an actress, film producer and director. She is married to music legend Sting. In 2011, she formed Maven Pictures with Celine Rattray. The company’s production credits include the award-winning Filth (2013) and Still Alice (2014); American Honey (2016) which won the Jury Prize at Cannes Film Festival; and The Kindergarten Teacher (2018), which won the Directing Award for Sara Colangelo at Sundance 2018. Freak Show is her feature directorial debut, premiering at the Berlin International Film Festival and receiving its UK premiere at BFI Flare earlier this year.  
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Thursday, February 8, 2018

Freak Show Estimated DVD Release Dates In Canada, US, And Great Britain

On DVD Releases February 8, 2018 In the United States and Canada released in theaters on January 12, 2018; our estimated dvd or blu-ray release date is April or May 2018. Netflix and Redbox dates are not available at this time. And from Fandango: There is no official release date for the Freak Show DVD and/or Blu-ray yet. Based on the average time between opening day and home entertainment releases, our unofficial estimate is around June 2018.
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Thursday, February 1, 2018

‘Freak Show’ movie review: If John Hughes were alive today …

Times Picayune ‘Freak Show’ movie review: If John Hughes were alive today … Updated Jan 30, 9:41 AM; Posted Jan 30, 9:41 AM Ask anyone who was a teenager in the 1980s, and they’ll tell you that if one filmmaker more than any other seemed to be speaking directly to them, it was John Hughes. The maker of such films as “The Breakfast Club,” “Sixteen Candles” and “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” — while perhaps not a technical master of the filmmaking arts — knew a whole lot about how to talk to kids. His movies were often-silly comedies, but beneath the jokes they were grounded in reality and compassion, honestly capturing the angst of growing up (not to mention the absurdity of adulthood) without ever condescending to their pimply faced target audiences. Hughes died in 2009, but if he were alive today and still making movies, one has to think he would probably be making movies like “Freak Show.” A look a movie, TV projects shooting or preparing to shoot in town. An indie teen comedy, it’s a touch rough around the edges from a technical standpoint, and its characters are, for the most part, fairly one-dimensional. But director Trudie Styler’s film manages to zoom in on the trials and tribulations of the American teenage experience in a way that feels reminiscent of Hughes’ work. Even the film’s setup sounds Hughesian: Thanks to a decision by his beloved but troubled mother (played in a small role by Bette Midler), a teenage misfit named Billy Bloom is forced to go to a new school in a small town where almost no one appreciates his off-the-charts level of fabulousness. “I’ve been hated before,” the vamp-prone Billy says in a voiceover, “but I’ve never been hated by everyone before.” His mother, however, has a saying: When they kick you, you just kick higher. So, to teach his classmates a bit about tolerance, acceptance and the value of originality, he decides to run for homecoming queen. Granted, you’ll probably be able to predict many of the film’s major plot points before they happen, but Styler’s film — while indulging in its share of teenage cliches — never feels stale. Part of that is the film’s message, which is very much a part of the current zeitgeist. Even more, though, is the lead performance of Alex Lawther, who is nothing short of a revelation in “Freak Show.” If you recognize Lawther, it’s probably from “Goodbye Christopher Robin” (in which he played the older Christopher Robin), “The Imitation Game” (in which he played the young Alan Turing) or “Black Mirror” (in which he plays a blackmailed teen). After “Freak Show,” however, you won’t just recognize Lawther. You’ll remember his name. He is that good, filling not just the role but every square inch of the movie screen as the film’s flamboyant, bedazzled and unapologetic teen queen. The best part is that Lawther, smartly, does it all without a trace of irony or meanness. We’re not meant to laugh at Billy. We’re meant to appreciate him and his daring sense of originality — and to pump our fist in solidarity for him when the time comes. Simply, Lawther nails it. He’s also the best reason to go see “Freak Show.” It might not be a John Hughes movie, but Styler makes it feel like it could be one — and Lawther makes Billy Bloom feel as if he’d be right at home alongside Ferris Bueller, Farmer Ted, Duckie Dale and other denizens of the Hughes universe. _____________ FREAK SHOW 3 stars, out of 5 Snapshot: A teen comedy about an unapologetically flamboyant boy who decides to teach his classmates a lesson in tolerance by running for homecoming queen. What works: The young Alex Lawther is tremendous in the lead role, with a tour de force performance that announces him as a talent to watch. What doesn’t: The story has its familiar elements, and its characters tend to be one-dimensional. Cast: Lawther, Abigail Breslin, AnnaSophia Robb, Ian Nelson, Willa Fitzgerald, Bette Midler. Director: Trudie Styler. Rating: Unrated. Running time: 1 hour 31 minutes. Where: Opens Friday (Feb. 2) at the Chalmette Movies.
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