(out of 5)
Shoddy little comedy that creates a fictional story surrounding the true event of the Stonewall riots: on a June night in 1969, gay men of Greenwich Village decided they’d had the last of being raided by the police, and by retaliating ended a period of openly violent police abuse and bias. The story surrounding this momentous historical occasion for gays and lesbians around the world is about a freewheeling young man (Frederick Weller in an excellent lead debut) who arrives in New York City to experience an open life as a gay man only to encounter more prejudice and restrictive laws than he’d ever expected. He befriends a kindhearted transvestite (Guillermo Díaz) and the two have a romance until Weller can no longer avoid his own inner homophobia and his desires take him elsewhere. The low budget is apparent in the underdeveloped production values, but the film is honest and straightforward and emerges enjoyable because of it. Not all of the subplots involving various characters work equally, but they’re entertaining.
British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC Arena
Directed by Nigel Finch
Cinematography by Chris Seager
Music by Michael Kamen
Costume Design by Michael Clancy
Film Editing by John Richards