God & Gays: Bridging the Gap

"Good"

God & Gays: Bridging the Gap Review


One of the biggest obstacles to gay people obtaining equal status in American society is the knee-jerk reaction that consideration of their couple-hood would damage the fundamental integrity of marriage. This "integrity" is based on a Christian sentiment that, to many, hails directly from Biblical verse. This highly-publicized mentality makes one wonder if you can both have Christian beliefs and be something other than heterosexual.

God & Gays: Bridging the Gap attempts to explore this particular question through interviews with clergy and practicing Christians who are either gay or who have had relatives that are. Discussions range from coming out of the closet, marriage, suicide, "fixing" the presumed malfunction that many fundamentalists consider homosexuality to be, and the ultimate self-acceptance of both having faith and appreciating yourself or loved ones for who they are. Each segmented theme is book-ended with the filmmaker walking the beach with her partner reflecting on these issues.

Though the subjects are interesting to listen to, and the tenets of Christianity analyzed in provoking discourse, the individuals feel like a random pick of appropriate responses. Several are part of organizations that are named, but little is said about what those groups actually are, so you're left wondering if the resources that would help the very fragile people they are reaching out to should have received more spotlight instead of repeating similar testimonies.

The onscreen filmmaker involvement is distracting because her words do little to enlighten the ideas she's exploring. You wish she'd trusted the material she was encountering a bit more to maintain the interest of a viewer.

However, besides the obvious low-budget nature of God & Gays, the people she chose to speak with are a mixture of backgrounds and provide articulate, oft-ignored opinions that are engaging to witness. As a mother is talking of the daughter she lost because of her own tunnel vision viewpoint, it becomes a powerful statement of painful learning and growth potential. And, as a lesbian reverend tracks society's need to have a hierarchy in humanity, the connection between the discrimination that gay people face becomes a universal issue instead of a specifically sexual one.

God & Gays is an important film in how it acknowledges ignorance without an outright pedantic attack on religion. Its exploration and understanding of the judgment encountered by homosexuals who happened to be raised Christian is beautifully balanced and promotes a share of intelligence far more productive than simply verbally assaulting a once-loved community. To continue with a faith that has attacked your nature is an inherently difficult struggle, and that those in this documentary have achieved this and continue to appreciate their religion engenders immense respect.



Facts and Figures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director: Luane Beck

Producer: Kim Clark

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