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MOVIE REVIEW

Where 'God and Gays' meet

October 27, 2008|Kevin Thomas | Thomas is a freelance writer.

Kim Clark and Luane Beck's "God and Gays: Bridging the Gap" is an excellent companion piece to Daniel Karslake's "For the Bible Tells Us So," and even the interviews feature several of the same people. The films make the point that for millenniums gays have been oppressed and worse by a literal interpretation of the Bible that is, in fact, challenged by linguistic scholarship.

Indeed, the film's most dynamic interviewee, the Rev. Deborah L. Johnson, points out that the word "homosexual" never appeared in the Bible until the 1946 Revised Standard Version.

Both films are inescapably preaching to the choir, since fundamentalists are not likely to watch such documentaries. Yet Clark and Beck's film is nevertheless empowering. Almost everyone interviewed was raised in a fundamentalist family, and most endured years of conflict, guilt and isolation. Yet they eventually came to accept their homosexuality and come out to family and friends -- resulting, in many instances, in rejection -- and move on to productive lives and relationships. Most all are involved in careers and causes aimed at bettering the lives of gay people. In the process, they have managed to hold on to their faith in a God they believe loves them. Their stories are filled with searing pain, real courage -- and a triumph of the spirit.

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'God and Gays: Bridging the Gap'

MPAA rating: Unrated

Running time: 1 hour, 32 minutes

Playing: At the Grande 4-Plex, 345 S. Figueroa St., downtown; (213) 617-0268.

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