It’s a coming of age story told in true Brit fashion riddled with dry humour and oh such a gem to watch. If you have not seen it you should, but get it for like a Tuesday night vibe because it really isn’t mind-blowing filmmaking here. I could blobber (that’s is blogging blabber) on about the film and its story but I like to relate a film or a certain aspect of it to something in my life or life in general. That way I feel the film has moved closer towards something more than just entertainment and it is really art.
It’s the scene at the end of “Beautiful Thing” where the one boy asks the other to dance right there in the courtyard of the apartment block because they are leaving it and going towards new beginning and all that jazz. Here is the vital life lesson I carry with me - if two boys can hold each other and dance in front of people because they love each other then two grown men in love, especially in gay Cape Town 2011, should be able to swap a loving kiss in a grocery store. However, you will be surprised how many of us, as gay men, are reluctant to show public affection in innocent surroundings such as a Spar. When did we become embarrassed of ourselves, our lovers and our love?
To find a man that sees nothing else but you and plants a sweet kiss on your tender lips while you stretch your arm out for that liter jug of full cream milk… is that not love? How can one sit back and preach love when that love can only transcend into something tender behind closed doors or in a dark and seedy gay bar? To me that sort of shying away from affection in the ‘straight’ public reads completely as embarrassment. Especially when one of the men in such a relationship is completely affectionate and devoid of self-awareness in terms of his love being the ‘other’ based merely on the fact that it is two men.
Where do we draw the line between public indecency and public affection? And to me that is where my point pops its silly little head up. I think the word public is irrelevant as it should really be about two people, the man reaching for the milk and the other man staring at him as he reaches for that milk. Now I am not about to rip off my shirt and give a man a lap dance on the processed meats nor would I condone it… well unless it’s just me looking, but the idea that someone can look at me doing a pretty ordinary thing such as grocery shopping and be helpless to stop himself from kissing me is intoxicating. It is captivating. How can you not find the whole idea completely delicious? That sort of sexual rush leaves me feeling inebriated to the maximum and I would love it if it were ever to happen to me… but does it take a man confident in his own sexuality to pull it off or is it purely based on how intoxicating he finds you? Maybe it is the combination of the two and we need both in order to forget whoever is looking...
Life is just too short guys and maybe you might want to open yourself up and consider holding the man’s hand, hey. Because Love is a Beautiful Thing! Don't shy away from it!