Cinema: Shades of Lavender

"Show me a happy homosexual and I'll show you a gay corpse." That line is the summing up of the hero and the film, The Boys in the Band. Adapted from Mart Crowley's off-Broadway hit, the movie suffers slightly from its exposure to air—from the process of "opening up" the work to include exteriors and reaction shots. The play took place in a single, narrow set that seemed like a down elevator to hell. Onscreen, the claustrophobic atmosphere has been dissipated. But the cast and, more important, the lines remain brilliantly bitchy and incisive....

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