"We had a gay teacher! We must face up to that, and move on with our lives."
A 1997 film directed by Frank Oz
, which deals with homosexuality with some degree of fairness, despite occasionally leaning back on stereotypes for its characters. Granted, it was 1997
, when the only easy way for the general public to tell somebody was gay was to fall back on stereotypes.
Howard Brackett (Kevin Kline
), a high school English teacher in the "BIG small town" of Greenleaf, Indiana, is preparing for his marriage to his fiancée of three years, Emily Montgomery (Joan Cusack
), while the whole town is abuzz with the news that hometown boy turned Hollywood megastar Cameron Drake (Matt Dillon) is picked as the favorite to win the Best Actor gong at the Academy Awards for his performance in a war film as a gay soldier. At Oscar night, the whole town is watching as Drake wins the award, and dedicates his award to Howard, who Cameron outs as gay.
The next day, Howard is beset with camera crews and reporters eager to get their slice of the story - including Peter Molloy (Tom Selleck
), a reporter for an entertainment gossip show - and tries to tell everyone that Cameron's made a mistake. However, the openly gay Molloy isn't convinced, and is covering the days leading up to Howard's wedding because he suspects denial. Thus Howard finds himself under tremendous pressure from his parents, his fiancée and the school's principal (Bob Newhart), Howard tries to assert his heterosexuality, but even he starts questioning himself, and has to face the truth...
Has nothing to do with the superlative West-coast burger joint. Or the Garrison Keillor song about the cat who wants to go in and out and in and out and in and out and...
This film provides examples of: