Category Archives: Absolutely Fabulous

Crossing the Hu-Du-Men

Hu-Du-Men
-a term from Cantonese Opera. It refers to an imaginary line between the stage and the backstage area. When actors cross the “Hu-Du-Men”, they should forget themselves and become their roles.

The opening shot of the 1996 Hong Kong film explains the origin of its title, which serves as a motif throughout the film. This wonderful comedy-drama by director Shu Kei tells the story of a famed Cantonese Opera performer Lang Kim-sum (played by the amazing Josephine Siao Fong-fong), who specializes in portraying male roles on the opera stage, and her struggle to juggle many different roles in life, both on and off stage. It has been over ten years since I first saw this film and, much to my delight, I re-watched it recently as I was conducting more research for my short film Memory of a Butterfly, a lesbian love story with Chinese Opera elements, that is based on my feature project.

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Sundance Premieres Dol (First Birthday) – Interview With Andrew Ahn

Tasteful.  Intense.  Exquisite.

All of these words describe my favorite Korean treats: Soju, Korean Bar-B-Que, and Andrew Ahn.

I first met Andrew Ahn at the 2011 Outfest mixer last year. He walked up to me and I was thinking, “Why is this tall, slender Korean male approaching me?” I’m usually mistaken for either Chris Evan’s body double or to be told that the way I’m staring at them is making their girlfriend uncomfortable, so I was prepared for what he had to ask. It turned out we had a lot of mutual friends in common and he was there for the premiere of his latest short film, Andy.

ImageHis CalArts thesis film, Dol (First Birthday), produced in Los Angeles, CA, has been officially selected as part of the Short Narrative Fiction Competition at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. Dol is about a Korean-American man living with his boyfriend who finds himself yearning for a life out of reach at his nephew’s first birthday party – a dol.

The inspiration for the film is just as beautiful as the story itself – Andrew used this film to come out to his parents. About as dramatic and heart-stopping as the Korean soap operas I watch on Hulu – Andrew cast his own parents in the film without telling them what the story was about.

Move over, Boys Before Flowers.

When Andrew told me he got into Sundance it went something like this:

Andrew: So, I’m going to Sundance.

Me: Oh that’s cool! Are you going to see any films?

Andrew: Yeah… Mine.

Me: … O_o

I knew I had to talk to Andrew directly about this, so I picked the most hipster coffee shop in Silverlake, Intelligentsia, where we both wore plaid button ups, skinny jeans and slipons and drank $5 coffee.

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Black Book

From the Goofoffs comes  this zany and brilliant music video “Black Book” complete with a retro late 80s / early 90s camp. There is something winning and endearing about this ghetto-fabulous music video that has so much fun that current pop doesn’t and takes itself way too seriously. Yes, it is quite fabulous!

A Chinese Class

Have you ever thought of learning Chinese? A few years back, I took the craziest Chinese class at Los Angeles City College and I decided to make a documentary out of my experience. After showing it at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, I completely forgot about the short but I just recently found the drive. It was the funnest Chinese class I have taken as my most queerious classmate Drew Bird—a filmmaker, musician, and hat maker—was really the star of the show. She is just one of the most fabulous characters I’ve met! And here’s Webisode 1 of “A Chinese Class” and don’t miss Drew’s discussion of bisexuality in Webisode 3!

Blueberry

This has got to be one of the most brilliant straight queer short film I’ve seen about a straight guy who ordered a $73 dollar prostitute who turns out to be… Blueberry! Written by and starring the ultra-talented Randall Park from The People I’ve Slept With, “Blueberry” is brilliant and reveals how a straight guy and a gay prostitute can spend a hilarious and moving night together. Happy New Year!

The Gayest Thing Ever on the American Tube

According to a baby boomer or early Generation-Xer, here’s the gayest thing he has ever seen on the television. It’s the late fabulous Liberace with Terry-Thomas on the American tube in the late 80s. But is it queerious?

Albert Nobbs

From the imagination of Irish novelist George Moore comes the upcoming lesbian blockbuster Albert Nobbs with Glenn Close who first played the titular character in a 1982 theatrical production. Judging from the trailer alone, I am sure that Albert Nobbs, a movie about an Englishwoman who disguises herself as a man, works as a butler in a hotel in order to survive in male-dominated 19th-century Ireland and falls in love with a young woman, will be the lesbian hit of this decade.

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