‘Strange World’: Disney finally deals with homosexuality with a gay couple as the protagonist in an irregular film | Culture

‘Strange World’: Disney finally deals with homosexuality with a gay couple as the protagonist in an irregular film | Culture
‘Strange World’: Disney finally deals with homosexuality with a gay couple as the protagonist in an irregular film | Culture

When just two months ago it was released Lightyear, perhaps also given the insignificance of the film, the main debate centered on the expression of sexuality and on a socially relevant sequence, especially since it is an animated film for children: two women, a couple for years in the story, they gave each other a welcome kiss, loving and chaste, after the return of one of them.

In these times and in real life, the action should not have much importance, and yet it did, mainly due to two issues: the controversial law in the State of Florida known as Don’t Say Gay, which prohibits people up to the age of nine years of class discussion between teachers and students about sexual orientation and gender identity, and Disney’s refusal as a company to comply with it; and the fact that that kiss from lightyear remained for some time in a drawer in the editing room, since it had been decided to cut it, until the protests of the Pixar employees themselves forced its recovery for its final premiere.

All this introduction comes to the story because, before the new animated premiere of Disney for Christmas, Strange world, Co-directed by Don Hall and Qui Nguyen, and once again given the artistic inequality of the film itself, the debate once again focuses on sexual orientation, but this time on a much larger scale: one of the protagonists, a teenager, is in love with another boy, he tells it to his father like something ordinary and he advises and supports him. But not because he is gay or not, but simply as a father who is by his son’s side in love and sentimental matters. That is to say, absolute normalization in the fact that a boy feels attracted to or loves another person of the same sex. As it should always be, on the other hand. And on the same wavelength as, for example, call me by your name of Luca Guadagnino, in which no family controversy was raised either.

That in some reviews and articles it is beginning to be said as something negative that there is no kiss between the couple of boys from Strange world, but a hug, should not belittle the decision. The hug or the kiss are borage water compared to the naturalness with which the relationship is exposed. And that is historical in Disney.

For the rest, the film has artistic aspects with more height than others. Narratively, as a classic adventure that could be linked to both Jules Verne and amazing trip Y The wonder chip provides an interesting subtext related to the surely inevitable disagreement between parents and children, here between three different generations: a rude and brave grandfather in the face of any contingency; a very practical father who provides solutions for everything; and a grandson, the adolescent boy, who flees from any conflict and who goes through life armed with an idealism very much of these times. An idealism that is also observed in one of the key sequences, when the three of them are playing a board game and while the grandfather and father insist that there must be a villain (or villain) in the fun, the grandson, new generation, he wonders why there should always be. Ideal, idealism or chimera? Or perhaps even fallacy and naivety?

Hall and Nguyen fail to create a new universe (that strange world in the title) that is attractive, with a combination of colors (fuchsias, greens and blues) that are not too aesthetic, and promote in their story an already habitual environmentalism to a large extent of contemporary proposals for children. But the main problem with the adventure itself is that the living organism in which they are supposed to cohabit and the immune system that accompanies it is described in such a cumbersome way that it is inevitable to get lost. Disney bets for an ideal world this Christmas, LGTBI and without villains. What is not little. But it is somewhat shipwrecked in what is essential in a film: that it be well told.


Address: Don Hall, Qui Nguyen.

Performers: Jake Gyllenhaal, Dennis Quaid, Gabrielle Union, Jaboukie Young-White, Lucy Liu.

Gender: animation adventures. USA, 2022.

Duration: 102 minutes.

Premiere: November 25.

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