It's encouraging that writer-director David Moreton (EDGE OF SEVENTEEN) thought it was high time for a movie featuring a gay character with as much five o'clock shadow and ultra-high-grade testosterone as, say, Bruce Willis in the DIE HARD movies. But while butching up their hero, Moreton and cowriter Dennis Hensley left out one key ingredient: charisma for all his macho swagger, the guy's unbearable. After hunky Argentine Pablo Alessandro (Antonio Sabato Jr., sounding very much like the Frito Bandito), dumps leather-jacketed graphic novelist Dean Seagrave (David Sutcliffe) without so much as a fare-thee-well after 10 whole months of dating, Seagrave wants some answers. Seagrave accosts Pablo's imperious mother (Sonia Braga), the high-handed and shellacked grande dame of a powerful Buenos Aires political family, at a local art exhibit where Dean's agent, Louise (Jennifer Coolidge, who surely has better things to do), has been trying to get Dean a show of his own, and learns that Pablo and his controlling madre are returning to Argentina first thing the following morning. Oh, and Pablo never wants to see him again. Refusing to believe it until he hears it directly from Pablo's lips, Dean books a flight to Buenos Aires. Two minutes after he rings Senora Alessandro's doorbell, she's got the police chasing him down the street. Desperate, Dean asks waitress Sofia (Celina Font), who works at the cafe directly across the street, if she's seen the tall, dark and handsome Pablo, but she seems reluctant to talk about the powerful Alessandro family. The stranger (Leonardo Brzezicki) Dean cruises in a nearby bookstore seems a bit friendlier, but what exactly does he want? And are those knowing glances he and Sofia exchange back at the cafe? Does it matter? Suffice it to say that Dean is walking straight into a bizarre, Chandleresque plot played out between strangers who have their own business with his beloved Pablo. In the novel by James Robert Baker on which Moreton and Hensley based their screenplay, Pablo not only breaks Dean's heart but burns down his house to boot, destroying all Dean's artwork as well as the manuscript for his new book. The film excises this highly salient detail, which leaves butt-kicking Dean with no motivation other than a bruised ego; as a result he comes off as little more than a petulant, psycho ex-boyfriend. Instead of a new kind of gay protagonist, Moreton serves up a macho drama queen with serious abandonment issues, and by the time his "hero" buys a machete and a cranium-size ice chest, the film has clearly ventured beyond the pale.
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- Released: 2004
- Rating: NR
- Review: Killing Pablo It's encouraging that writer-director David Moreton (EDGE OF SEVENTEEN) thought it was high time for a movie featuring a gay character with as much five o'clock shadow and ultra-high-grade testosterone as, say, Bruce Willis in the DIE HARD… (more)