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Lip service

November 24, 2002

Lynn Smith declares "Hollywood has been flirting with different types of male kisses for more than three decades" ("More than just a kiss," Nov. 10). She then describes a kiss between actors Peter Finch and Murray Head during a scene in the film "Sunday Bloody Sunday." She then states flatly: "The movie tanked."

I assume she is referring to the fact that the film performed poorly at the box office here in the U.S., where it was not produced. For this was not a Hollywood film, as she falsely infers, but a British film, made in England under a small production company, Vectia Films Ltd., then released through United Artists in Britain, where it performed quite well at the box office. It garnered four Oscar nominations -- including best actress, best actor and best director -- and won a Golden Globe for best English-language foreign film.

I do wish that your writers would refrain from using such grossly misleading revisionist rhetoric, as if box-office receipts here in the States are the only measure of a film's worth -- particularly when considering the touchy subject that is male homosexuality in popular or "mainstream" cinema.

Rick Rodriguez

Newport Beach

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