Review by Tom Avila
Rating: (4 out of 5) [Critic’s Pick!]
Saturday, 10/24/2009, 7:00 PM
Feature presentation, $10 at Shakespeare Theatre’s Harman Center for the Arts
HERE’S THE PROBLEM with Casper Andreas and Fred M. Caruso’s Big Gay Musical: Anyone who says anything bad about this film will instantly be labeled a huge killjoy. An overly serious, incredibly annoying, capital ”C” critic who would be far better off if they would just relax and realize that it’s okay to simply have a good time at a movie.
You may also earn the wrath of Michael Musto, whose appearance in the film’s opening scene is a gift to critics and reluctant theatergoers all over the world.
Fortunately, it’s difficult not to have good things to say about Big Gay Musical, (phew) a film that is actually far more serious than either the Musto opening or its winking title would suggest. Musical is campy enough to entertain, genuine enough to believe, and weighty enough to remember.
Paul and Eddie are preparing for the opening night of Adam & Steve: Just the Way God Made ‘Em, an off-Broadway musical that finally shines a light on that much rumored but often dismissed portion of the Creation story. God creates Adam and Steve after he has given Adam and Eve the boot. He wants to brighten the Garden of Eden up a little.
The musical parts of Musical are largely production numbers from the show, the plot of which begins to neatly mirror Paul and Eddie’s off-stage lives. Paul is trying to figure out what it takes to find Mr. Right while Eddie is looking for a way to tell his very religious parents that he’s looking for a Mr., not Ms., Right himself. And they do it all thanks to and in spite of the assistance of their own team of fairy chorus boys.
Daniel Robinson and Joey Dudding are fantastic in their roles as Paul/Adam and Eddie/Steve. They’re joined by a terrific cast of characters including Steve Hayes as a very Mel Brooks-inflected onstage God and Liz McCartney. McCartney plays televangelist Patty-Maye in Adam and Steve and her performance of the song ”As I Am” has big gay anthem written all over it.
Throughout the film, Andreas and Caruso have absolutely nailed the musical theater sound in the production numbers. They’ve also exercised a light hand when it comes to the film’s visual aspects. It’s a nice balance that keeps one foot in the real world even while the other is dancing on stage wearing nothing more than a fig leaf and a smile.
So go ahead. Treat yourself to a Big Gay Musical. It’s what He would want you to do.