Mark Simpson interviews Neil LaBute about his film ‘In the Company of Men’ – twenty years before ‘toxic masculinity’ went ‘hegemonic’ (Originally appeared in Attitude, 1998) Women are made of sugar and spice. While men are made from slugs and snails and puppy dogs’ tails. This would appear to be the conclusion of American playwright Neil LaBute’s first movie, In the Company of Men. Based on his stage play of the same name, it’s a merciless exposure of male sadism, power-jockeying, moral bankruptcy and nasty… Read More »Men Make Terrible Company – Neil LaBute interview
Mark Simpson recalls meeting Cornelius and his ‘hungry eyes’ Grief these days seems to come easier when attached to the death of celebrities. Especially when seen as the end of not just a media relationship but an age of innocence. For some it was the death of Diana, Kennedy, Lennon or Martin Luther King. For me it was the death last year of that international icon, superstar and chimpanzee Roddy McDowall. What TV giveth, TV taketh away. BBC1 Sunday lunchtime news, to be exact: ‘Roddy… Read More »Monkey Business: Roddy McDowall & Me
by Mark Simpson (Originally appeared in Fall 2018 issue of XY Mag) “WE’RE ON OUR ‘ONEYMOON!” Two teenage working class lads, Matt and Phil, hitching from London to the South Coast, are in the back of a car driven by a middle-aged man with a moustache and a bowtie, who has asked why they’re headed there. “What??” he replies, puzzled for a moment by the honeymoon answer. “Oh, I get ya – fast workers, eh? I could teach you a thing or two! Promise them… Read More »‘Oneymoons & Bloody Deviants – How Gay Love Stories Lost Their Way At The Movies
Mark Simpson on how Sean Connery’s ‘overgrown stuntman’ sired a generation of young men licenced to thrill So, Mr Bond finally did what Mr Goldfinger expected him to do. Even if it took 56 years. This October, two months after his 90th birthday, Sir Thomas Sean Connery, the first, most definitive, most popular, most alluring, most stirring incarnation of the unshaken British secret agent, died. Connery made six official and one unofficial Bond films. And of course, many more non-Bond films, some of them classics,… Read More »Goodbye, Mr Bond – Hello Buff New World
I recently attended a party hosted by my old chum the author Roger Clarke. I was lucky to meet many of his charming pals – including a particularly charming young film maker called Adrian Goycoolea who, it transpired, was Quentin Crisp’s nephew. Yes, England’s ‘Stately Homo’ was his uncle. His great uncle, to be precise. Now, that’s what you call a relation. Crisp of course wanted us to think he was his own special creation, composed of two parts aphorism and three parts henna. He… Read More »Uncle Denis? Quentin Crisp’s Secret Life Revealed!