Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Robin Williams Comes Out In Final Film Release, "Boulevard"

As the name of this blog indicates, I have special experience when it comes to coming out of the closet in mid-life.  Added to my own journey has been what I have learned from others making the journey, including one relative and acquaintances of the husband and our circle of friends.  It is safe to say that there is no recipe or blue print of how one goes about the process of letting go of the in some ways artificial life that was created to meet the expectations of family and society as a whole. A new movie - which I have yet to see - looks at the process and stars the late Robin Williams.  The name of the film is "Boulevard."  Some may pan the film, but it addresses an issue that I suspect impacts far more men and women than most are likely able to imagine.  As I have noted in the past, simple go to Craigslist or sites like adam4Adam or Grindr and witness just how many closeted married men there are. The question is one of how many will decide to come to full self-acceptance as opposed to continuing to live a role dictated to them by others.   Deadline Holywood looks at the film which I do plan to see.  Here are excerpts:
Robin Williams’ final theatrical release, Boulevard, opens this weekend via Starz Digital. The feature, starring Williams as a 60-year-old married man who comes out of the closet, debuted at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival, but was temporarily shelved following the actor’s death. Starz will open the film in a slow traditional rollout this summer.

Boulevard centers on a married but closeted 60-year-old bank officer Nolan (Williams), whose spontaneous turn down an unknown street upends his monotonous life and marriage. After forming an unusual friendship with a young, charismatic hustler named Leo, Nolan finds himself on a journey of self-discovery that forces him to confront lifelong secrets he has kept from his wife, Joy (Kathy Baker), and himself. Nolan’s climactic decision to confront who he really is promises to bring happiness and reconciliation to both him and his wife, proving that it is never too late to change life for the better.

“I received a copy of the script…and something about it really touched me,” said director Dito Montiel. “Probably the last thing your agent wants to hear is that you want to do [a movie] about a 60-year-old man coming out. [But] there was an aspect of the coming out I was drawn to and that was of the marriage itself. The [couple] do love each other. It’s not a ‘stand-up and cheer’ to leave ‘the evil woman.’ They did love each other.”

The film has also screened as part of recent Robin Williams retrospectives at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York (MOMI) and the American Cinematheque in L.A. “We planned the release around a lot of things but didn’t plan around the Marriage Equality Act,” said Starz’s Winokur. “Robin’s character is 60 and didn’t have the right to live his life as he would have. It’s a fortuitous coincidence to be able to look at this movie with a fresh pair of eyes.” Starz also released the film’s trailer on YouTube, receiving about 4 million views.
Recently, I was at the birthday party for one of my grandchildren and my ex-wife was there with her husband.  It was awkward at first - I usually "self-medicate" with a glass or two of wine - but we did hug each other.  The truth is that we did love each other once upon a time.  Sadly, we were doomed to failure because I my inability to accept myself for so many years and my foolish belief in wrongheaded, false religious dogma and "pray away the gay" lies and nonsense.  We all deserve happiness and we all deserve to be happy.  I do hope that my former wife finds happiness too.  With our children and now grand children, we will always be connected. 

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