Gay Men at the Movies
Film reception, cinema going and the history of a gay male community
By (author) Scott McKinnon
Publication date:15 November 2016
Length of book:250 pages
'The book is not a history of gay films or a history of gay men as film actors, writers, directors, or producers. McKinnon's focus is on gay men as film audiences rather than as filmmakers. The films considered here are popular cinema, meaning movies screened in commercial theaters and reviewed in the mainstream media. McKinnon is not interested in developing new insights or analyses of these films but rather in understanding "the historical processes of interpretation and meaning-making undertaken by audiences." At the movies, we engage not only with a film, but also with a space, with an audience, friends, and a neighborhood, so that going to movies is an act of social and cultural interaction and participation. Thus to understand how movies have shaped gay culture, identity, and community, we need to contemplate the place, context, and ongoing memories of film viewing that become part of our individual histories and a collective past. '