The Butch Factor (2009) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Butch Factor (2009)

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While most men wrestle with the notion of what masculinity means to themselves and within their culture, the issue is especially tricky for gay men, some of who openly reject traditional gender roles while others seem obsessed with appearing even more "manly" than their straight counterparts. Filmmaker Christopher Hines explores the often contradictory notions of masculinity within the gay community in the documentary The Butch Factor. Hines profiles a number of gay men who are athletes, rodeo cowboys, prison guards and rock musicians, and they share their feelings about the nexus between the macho exterior of their life pursuits and their own sexuality. Hines also interviews a handful of willfully effeminate men who talk about their rejection of a traditional masculine image while also having to defend themselves against anti-gay violence, and gay men on both sides of the divide contribute their feelings about the less complicated perspective on what constitutes manhood for straight men. The Butch Factor received its world premiere at the 2009 San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival.
Rating:
NR
Genre:
Documentary , Special Interest , Gay & Lesbian
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
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Critic Reviews for The Butch Factor

All Critics (1)

Well intended but, ultimately, repetitive and less than insightful.

Full Review… | December 30, 2009
IdentityTheory

Audience Reviews for The Butch Factor

A rather interesting Logo documentary addressing the issue of masculinity in gay culture, specifically what it is like not to fit in with the camp pop culture obsessed gay stereotype and become part of the community. It is mostly a talking head doc speaking to gay men who defy the "usual" stereotype and play sports, work blue collar jobs, a prison guard, even gay cowboys. There is also the counterpoint of effeminate guys who were always challenged about their masculinity so were forced to come out earlier and build up a defence against the latent homophobia Does a great job of balancing both perspectives, but could have done with a bit more history. A worthy watch though.

Graham Beilby
Graham Beilby
½

The Butch Factor wants to showcase different kinds of gay men in an effort to reinforce the notion everyone comes to their version of masculinity a different way. That's all well and good, though it strikes out in the editing department. Instead of including quick look backs at history late in the film, they should be front and center in order to compare where masculinity was to where it is. Plus, with a deputy sheriff, rugby player, football player, rodeo cowboy and softball player, the film is top loaded with the "normal" version of masculinity even though each of the men profiled came to their particular masculinity in a different way. This almost feels like an elongated piece for a news magazine instead of a feature film. The stories are short, the personalities don't reappear later in the film and the thesis is, quite frankly, more than a bit boring. (I think the point here is to say everyone is worthy of respect, courtesy and love regardless of how they act, what they wear or how they talk.) The Butch Factor gets a little preachy toward the end with the introduction of an author who is almost dismissive of current "twink" gay culture. That part, at the very least, could have been left out since it comes off as little more than a grown man whining.

Jason Vargo
Jason Vargo
½

The Butch Factor wants to showcase different kinds of gay men in an effort to reinforce the notion everyone comes to their version of masculinity a different way. That's all well and good, though it strikes out in the editing department. Instead of including quick look backs at history late in the film, they should be front and center in order to compare where masculinity was to where it is. Plus, with a deputy sheriff, rugby player, football player, rodeo cowboy and softball player, the film is top loaded with the "normal" version of masculinity even though each of the men profiled came to their particular masculinity in a different way. This almost feels like an elongated piece for a news magazine instead of a feature film. The stories are short, the personalities don't reappear later in the film and the thesis is, quite frankly, more than a bit boring. (I think the point here is to say everyone is worthy of respect, courtesy and love regardless of how they act, what they wear or how they talk.) The Butch Factor gets a little preachy toward the end with the introduction of an author who is almost dismissive of current "twink" gay culture. That part, at the very least, could have been left out since it comes off as little more than a grown man whining.

Jason Vargo
Jason Vargo

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