Friday, December 9, 2005

Brokeback Mountain

I have been waiting to see this film since I read the short story by Annie Proulx in the New Yorker in 1997; I still have that magazine, and the story touched me deeply.

It’s gotten the tag “the gay cowboy movie,” which the director, Ang Lee, insists it isn’t. Maybe I’m prejudiced, but when I read the story eight years ago, I didn’t see it as “the gay cowboy short story.” It’s a love story, pure and simple, and as a writer who would like to see an end to the pigeonholing of fiction, I’m hoping that people who see Brokeback Mountain will be able to look beyond the fact that it’s two men who are in love. That’s not to say that the story isn’t about the struggle that the men have in acknowledging their love for each other in both the macho world of the West and the time period (1963). But it would be a loss if people didn’t go see it because they’re repelled by the subject matter or, on the other hand, go just to see two men humping.

It’s number one on my to-see list, and I’ll let you know what I think of it as soon as I’ve seen it.

Update: Brian provided a link to the original short story from The New Yorker archives. I don’t think reading the story will spoil the film.