9 Dead Gay Guys

2002, Movie, NR, 101 mins


Lab Ky Mo's larky farce in the laddish vein of LOCK, STOCK AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS and SNATCH walks a thin line between refreshing irreverence and shameless exploitation of offensive gay stereotypes. Awash in cheeky gags involving angry queer dwarves, swishy size queens, closeted Orthodox Jews, predatory daddys and characters with names like Dick-cheese Deepak and Donkey-dick Dark, its cruel yocks revolve around two ostensibly straight lads who, through no particular fault of their own, leave a trail of deceased gay men in their wake. Bone-lazy Byron (Brendan Mackey) left Belfast for London and has grievously misled his childhood friend, Kenny (Glenn Mulhern), as to the opportunities available to unskilled Irish lads like themselves. Kenny's unannounced arrival quickly reveals the truth: Byron is broke, perpetually drunk and living in a squalid squat. And that's not the worst of it: Byron confesses he's been hustling for extra cash at the local gay bar, The Elephant's Graveyard. Just oral sex, mind you, no real gay sex, and always for money; just to make it clear in his own mind that everything's on the up-and-up, Byron makes it a practice to roll his customers whenever possible. The first dead gay guy is the Queen (Michael Praed); the Elephant's graveyard is abuzz with the news that he was electrocuted with a cattle prod the previous night. And wouldn't you know, Byron lifted that same cattle prod from a back-room customer; unfortunately, all he knows about the fellow is that he has a tragically small endowment. The Queen's boyfriend, a closeted Orthodox Jew (Simon Godley) is rumored to have a fortune stuffed into his mattress, so Byron and Kenny figure the murderer must have the money and that makes him worth finding. But idiots that they are, their every efforts seem to leave another gay corpse littering the London landscape while bringing them no closer to the fabled "bread in the bed." Black comedy is hard (remember Joe Pesci in the painful 8 HEADS IN A DUFFEL BAG?), and first-time writer-director Lab Ky Mo succeeds in pulling off some rudely funny set pieces that will nevertheless offend as many viewers as they tickle. leave a comment --Maitland McDonagh

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