Breakfast with Scot Laurie Lynd

Breakfast with Scot Laurie Lynd
It could have been worse. This gay family comedy is not especially funny and not particularly brilliant but it’s warm and friendly enough to make you forget those little flaws.

Thomas Cavanaugh stars as Ed, a closeted ex-hockey player who now works as a sports caster. He and his lawyer partner Sam (Ben Shenkman) are happily shacked up when they get the news that the ex-girlfriend of Sam’s brother has died of an overdose. This means that the couple has to take care of their nephew Scot (Noah Bennett), an effeminate, Christmas-carol singing wimp who doesn’t live up to the virile athletic standards of Ed and his internalised homophobia. Thus he sets out to make a hockey playing man out of Scot, not realising he’s going to break the boy’s spirit in the process.

This makes for a rather nice corrective to the misguided I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry. Instead of applying macho hostility to a nominally progressive storyline, the film undercuts such attitudes with a firm sympathy for "nancy boys” and other outsiders. I kind of wish it was less conventional — clearly a result of the new Canadian funding rules (and their emphasis on more "commercial” projects), it’s bland, unadventurous filmmaking without much style or originality. And the widespread nature of straight people’s tolerance is somewhat overstated, intimating that everything will be okay when very often things aren’t.

Still, within those limited parameters the film isn’t bad. If it doesn’t distinguish itself it doesn’t embarrass itself either, and you may be surprised at the goodwill you feel afterwards. Breakfast with Scot is no masterpiece but it can be considered one of the more successful attempts to mate the American model with the Canadian sensibility. (Capri)