Director: Clint Eastwood
Writers: Jason Hall, Chris Kyle (book)
Stars: Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Kyle Gallner
Bradley Cooper adds 40 pounds of muscle and a Texas twang to remarkably transform himself into Chris Kyle, a Navy SEAL who became a legend, literally, because of his ability as a sniper. The majority of this film takes place during his enemy encounters in Iraq, all shot with controlled, precise skill by director Clint Eastwood. This alternates with his struggles to adapt to the civilian world of husband and father, presented by Eastwood with empathy but restrained emotion. Although some scenes go on too long, the film’s quiet intensity, the character’s determination and Cooper’s performance make for a compelling experience.
GAY ANGLE: One gay soldier joke has a positive punch line and Jonathan Groff (star of HBO’s “Looking”) has a small role as an appreciative vet.
The Wedding Ringer
Director: Jeremy Garelick
Writers: Jeremy Garelick, Jay Lavender
Stars: Kevin Hart, Josh Gad, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting
Josh Gad plays a friendless nerd who’s about to be married and hires Kevin Hart to be his best man and provide all the groomsmen. The only real reason to see this movie is for Hart’s manic-mouth comic comments. The plot is painfully predictable, except when it veers off into absurd sequences that are supposed to provide outrageous laffs, but just fall flat. There are a few funny moments, but without Hart’s energy this jumbled mess turns into a Hollywood hybrid of too many farces that did it better.
GAY ANGLE: There are a handful of gay jokes and one flaming character that provides one of the film’s best gags.
Jerry Williams reviewed movies for WTVR-TV for 14 years and for Style Weekly for 10 years. When he launched his own website in 1998 at TVJerry.com, he took his reviews to the Internet. Through those hundreds of reviews, Jerry kept his sexual orientation muted. So, he's excited to be adding "gay angles" to his postings for GayRVA.com.