By admin | October 23, 2011

Francoise Romand’s 30-minute documentary focuses on the 2010 Gay Games, held in Cologne, Germany. Conceived as a quadrennial Olympics-style competition for 10,000 athletes who openly identify themselves as LGBT, the competition includes a number of traditional sports events along with a few that have yet to be included in the Olympics (including ballroom dancing, chess and bodybuilding).

Romand’s film takes an extremely casual approach to the event, including a large number of lengthy, spontaneous interviews with unidentified competitors. These interviews are conducted on the street and in noisy public transportation settings, and the camerawork and sound recording leave something to be desired.

Oddly, the Gay Games’ events are barely seen, with very brief glimpses of the competition and a fleeting view of what appeared to be a very colorful opening ceremony. When Romand manages to film the competitors, however, it often appears that their athletic prowess is at a mediocre level. (There is one unintentionally funny shot of an elderly and out-of-shape lady playing table tennis – whether she was a competitor or just someone who picked up a paddle is unclear).

Ultimately, the film gives the impression of the Gay Games as being an oversized party for the LGBT community, with sports as something of an afterthought.

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