Sugar (2004) - Rotten Tomatoes

Sugar (2004)

Sugar (2004)

TOMATOMETER

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Sugar Photos

Movie Info

Adapted from a series of short stories by Canadian cult favorite Bruce La Bruce, this seriocomic coming-of-age story stars Andre Noble as Cliff, a teenager growing up in Toronto in the 1980s. While Cliff is aware of the fact he's gay and has a ravenous curiosity about sex, he hasn't been able to do much about it. However, on his 18h birthday, Cliff's free-thinking mother, Madge (Marnie McPhail), pours him a stiff drink, offers him a reefer, and politely but firmly tells him to go downtown and have some fun. Eager to lose his virginity, Cliff instead encounters Butch (Brendan Fehr), a good-looking guy in his early twenties who makes his living as a male prostitute. Cliff is infatuated with Butch from the first moment he sees him; however, while Butch appears fond of Cliff and strikes up a friendship with him, his career has forced him to develop a sense of emotional distance from others, and he isn't interested in sex with other men unless he's being paid for it. Cliff becomes a regular visitor to Butch's apartment and gets a crash course in the underbelly of the Toronto gay community, but one day Butch drafts Cliff into performing a sex act with him for a customer, leaving Cliff humiliated and heartbroken. Sugar also stars Sarah Polley and Maury Chaykin. Only the second feature film from respected theatrical director John Palmer, it was screened as part of the 2004 San Francisco Lesbian and Gay Film Festival.

Cast

Sarah Polley
as Pregnant Girl
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Critic Reviews for Sugar

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (3)

can't imagine a baseball fan%u2014or a moviegoer%u2014who wouldn't respond on some level to the new film "Sugar," a rich and moving reminder of the way professional sports aspirations can shape someone's destiny in the real world, as opposed to the mytho

April 17, 2009 | Rating: 4/4
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

This tale of tortured love between a gay youth and street hustler juggles a complex load of emotional and tonal colors within an admirably lean runtime.

August 31, 2004 | Full Review…
Variety
Top Critic

This probation of the American Dream, a highlight of the Sundance Film Festival, benefits from a wonderful lead performance by a nonprofessional actor

February 19, 2008 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…
EmanuelLevy.Com

A strong story with moments of insight and a vivid sense of mortality, but it's also scrappy and indulgent.

March 17, 2005 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
Shadows on the Wall

A screening of Sugar should become compulsory for all young men contemplating the transition from school-yard beat-offs to full-service drug and hustling lifestyles.

August 31, 2004 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Sugar

86% of critics liked this.... yea. well dont ask me, i dont know anything.

Coxxie Mild Sauce
Coxxie Mild Sauce

Super Reviewer

More interesting than entertaining but I did like it.

Sunil Jawahir
Sunil Jawahir

Super Reviewer

A surprisingly excellent, and considering the source material is from Bruce LeBruce, unexploitative drama based on semi-autobiographical short stories.

Made on a shoe-string budget (and looking it), there's real talent here both behind and in front of the cameras. Director John Palmer infuses the film with an energy that doesn't let up, with bravaura camera techniques shot on hand-held and a realistic lighting scheme. The story is pretty downbeat and depressing, as expected, but the characters don't wallow in self-pity and through the short running time we get to know them very well. There's little backstory but the characters already feel like they've been on a journey even when they've only just been introduced.

The writing is provocative and the performances from Brendan Fehr, and in particular, Andre Noble (who died shortly after filming was complete from accidental poising) are superb, and there's a fantastic cameo from Sarah Polley.

Daniel Parsons
Daniel Parsons

Super Reviewer

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