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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Reeling Review #2: See Pit Stop at Chicago's LGBT Film Festival

I loved Pit Stop - and I think you will, too. Directed by Yen Tan, this wonderful drama has a simple and familiar premise - two strangers spend the entire film living their separate lives while the audience waits for them to finally meet and hopefully find happiness together. The 1998 romantic comedy, Next Stop Wonderland, used this same storytelling device, which works to an even greater emotional effect in Tan and David Lowery's quietly compelling screenplay.

Pit Stop takes place in a small Texas town, where a gay contractor named Gabe lives with his ex-wife and young daughter after refusing to move away with his former lover. Meanwhile, another gay man, Ernesto, spends his time at the hospital with a comatose ex-lover while the younger man he is currently unhappily involved with is planning to move to Los Angeles. The town may be a pit stop in life for both Gabe and Ernesto's boyfriends, but one can also say that these romantic liaisons are only pit stops for Gabe and Ernesto as they wait for the real thing to come along.

All the performances in the film are excellent, including Amy Seimetz as Gabe's ex-wife who is looking for love herself and Corby Sullivan as a teacher whom Gabe goes on a date with. But it's the two leads - Bill Heck (Gabe) and Marcus DeAnda (Ernesto) - who make Pit Stop such a memorable place to visit. They are both amazing in their roles. My only complaint with this beautiful and touching film is that I wanted to spend more time with these characters. I didn't want it to end - and that is always a good sign of a great movie.

Show time: 4:30 pm, Sunday, November 10, at the Logan Theatre (2646 N. Milwaukee)
Running time: 80 minutes

Over the next two weeks I will be reviewing films that will be shown during Reeling31: The Chicago LGBT International Film Festival, which runs November 7 - 14 (click here to see all my reviews). For a complete schedule of films, go to You can purchase tickets online (click here) or in person at Chicago Filmmakers (5243 N. Clark) Monday - Friday 10:30 am - 6 pm. You can also get the latest festival news by following Reeling on Twitter and Facebook.


Mark in DE said...

I will be seeing this film at the Rehoboth Beach independent Film Festival next week. Thanks for the sneak peak!

Marc said...

I hope you enjoy the film as much as I did, Mark.