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Review of Requiem for a Dream

I include a review of this film on this gay, bisexual and bicurious site for two reasons that together I use as justification, even though it is not a gay film by any stretch.  First, it is a superb film that has been widely overlooked by the general public.  Second, and probably more importantly, it has Jared Leto among its stars, although Ellen Burstyn receives top billing.

I first fell in love (or lust) with Leto when he was the offbeat love interest on the too short-lived “My So Called Life.”  I found him to be a remarkable talent.  Okay, I also found him to be terrific eye candy.

In this film from 2000, Leto has grown up and is still attractive, although he doesn’t make me want to leave my partner of twenty years as he once did.  He portrays an offbeat, still.  This time he is the drug addled son of Ellen Burstyn’s character.

It is Burstyn’s remarkable performance that is truly captivating.  She transforms herself from a somewhat wacky paranoid woman living too much in the past into an equally drug addled television addict who no longer has any grip on reality.  She won and Oscar nomination for this performance.  She deserved that and far more.  Of course, it is unsurprising to watch such an accomplished performer who can make any character come to life.

This film is unrated, which may partly explain it overall lack of viewers.  It is tough to watch in places, just as the lives of real addicts are difficult to watch.  We care about  these characters deeply, which magnifies the emotional impact.

I’m giving this movie its fifth star because of Burstyn, not only because I have been seduced by Leto’s dark appearance.

I must also point out that Marlon Wayans turns in a very good performance as Leto’s best friends…and he’s not bad to look at either.

requiem for a dream dvd

Genre: Drama…with absolutely no gay themes

Director: Darren Aronofsky

Language: English

Availability:  DVD

99Gay-Men.us Rating: *****

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