Defying Gravity

( 6 )

Overview

A typical frat rat has a secret lurking in his closet in this gay-themed drama. John "Griff" Griffith Daniel Chilson is a student at a college in Southern California, where he lives with his friends in a fraternity house. Griff's frat brothers and his best friend Todd Niklaus Lange don't know that he has been having an affair with Pete Bradley Don Handfield, another member of the frat who lives in an off-campus apartment. While Griff acts "straight" and talks about women with his beer-drinking frat brothers, his ...
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Overview

A typical frat rat has a secret lurking in his closet in this gay-themed drama. John "Griff" Griffith Daniel Chilson is a student at a college in Southern California, where he lives with his friends in a fraternity house. Griff's frat brothers and his best friend Todd Niklaus Lange don't know that he has been having an affair with Pete Bradley Don Handfield, another member of the frat who lives in an off-campus apartment. While Griff acts "straight" and talks about women with his beer-drinking frat brothers, his involvement with Pete has been going on for some time. Pete has accepted his homosexuality and is tentatively inching out of the closet; he wants to have a real relationship with Griff, based on more than furtive sex, but Griff is unwilling to acknowledge that he is gay. Pete asks Griff to meet him at a gay coffeehouse; their conversation turns into an argument, and Pete storms off in a huff. The next day, Griff learns that Pete is in the hospital; while walking home, he was attacked by gay-bashing yahoos and is now in a coma. Griff must now resolve his confused sexual identity, as well as his feelings for Pete. Defying Gravity was the debut feature for writer/director John Keitel.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/11/2000
  • UPC: 754703761439
  • Original Release: 1997
  • Rating:

  • Source: Wolfe Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Time: 1:33:00
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Daniel Chilson John (Griff) Griffith
Niklaus Lange Todd Bentley
Don Handfield Pete Bradley
Linna Carter Denetra Washington
Seabass Diamond Matthew (Doogie) McDougal
Lesley Tesh Heather
Ryan Tucker Gary Buchanan
Nicki Lynn Aycox Gretchen
Nicki Lynn Gretchen
Laura Fox Mrs. Bradley
Kevin P. Wright Mr. Bradley
Technical Credits
John Keitel Director, Screenwriter
Patrick Baca Casting
Tom Harting Cinematographer
Jon T. Howard Songwriter
Jack Koll Producer
Scott McPhail Production Designer
Billy R. Miller Costumes/Costume Designer
David Clayton Miller Producer
Darryl Patterson Sound/Sound Designer
Bob Peterson Art Director
David Tarleton Asst. Director
Tim Westergren Score Composer
Matthew Yagle Editor
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Outstanding

    Mere words cannot express how I feel about this movie. I saw and wanted to cry at the the end. This movie is just absolutely the best. I just love it. I have to own it on dvd now.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Defty Gravity Doesn't Quite Leave the Ground

    ''Defying Gravity'' is a good effort in the coming-out genre. It's grounded in the architypical Southern California frat house for atmosphere and, unfortunately, doesn't stray far from there. The characters are fairly whitebread and the plot uncomplicated. Even in the face of such commonplace, the emotional atmosphere could have been sharpened and made far more compelling with dialog calculated to reveal some emotional depth, not choke off its characters' development. The protagonist (Griff) is limp, not conflicted. And the synergy between Griff and Pete (Griff's love interest) doesn't really get a chance to develop. That's not to say the movie's poor; it could have soared with a tighter script that showed its characters grappling with the reality of queerness and the mystery of love.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    ''Defying Gravity'' is a Beautiful Film

    ''Defying Gravity'' is a very, very special film. While it may not have the ''profundity'' and ''greatness'' of many others, it touched my heart in a way that not many other movies ever have. The story of affable, box-next-door ''frat boy'' John ''Griff'' Griffith's coming to terms with his sexuality, under the most distressing of circumstances, is told in a way that seems so very real and immediate that I think you would have to have a heart of stone not be moved by it. Daniel Chilson, who plays Griff, does so with such sympathy and unaffected sincerity, that once cannot help but feel his emotions within one's self. From the beginning it is obvious that, deep-down, he loves Pete (ably played by Don Handfield) very, very much. More, in fact, than his is willing or able to admit to himself. It takes the horrible beating that Pete endures at the hands of a few of Griff's homophobic frat brothers to make Griff realize that he can no longer deny Pete - or himself. It is Griff's unselfishly supportive best friend Todd, touchingly acted by Niklaus Lange, who ultimately acts as Griff's ''savior''. In the climactic scene of the film, Griff, who is on the verge of a complete breakdown, is taken away to a favorite mountain retreat by Todd, who knows that something is very seriously amiss with Griff. Up in the mountains, looking out at the beautiful scenerey, Griff tells Todd the whole story of how he and Pete ''found'' each other and became lovers. While Griff tells Todd the story, a flashback is shown, illustrating the events of that day. As a result, Griff says to Todd, ''...all at once everything is different.'' When asked by Todd if he loves Pete and Griff says ''...I've never been so sure of anything...'' one's heart just melts. In the few scenes between Pete and Griff you can feel their sexual tension. But you can also see, in the almost unwilling smiles and ''glow'' that both men take on when their eyes briefly lock and they momentarily drop their defenses, that their relationship is much more than just ''getting their rocks off'' - this is a true and life shattering love. If you have a heart, whether you're gay or straight or something in between, you will love this film.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Defying Gravity, Is GREAT

    Defying Gravity is a great movie, although the script is weak in some areas. The 3 lead actors Daniel Chilson, Don Hanfield, and Niklaus Lange, play their characters with ease. I highly recommend this movie, it's worth watching.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Beautiful Film

    Initially I thought I'd be turned off by the melodramatic plot of this film.. but after watching it, I found it to be quite touching. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Defying Gravity NOT just an adult version of an after-school special

    It is easy to see this movie as nothing more than an over-the-top made for TV movie or after-school special. However, if one looks deeper, Defying Gravity is one of the best coming-out films out there. Griff, the ultimate Frat boy, must come to terms with who he really is, when friend and lover, Pete, is gay-bashed. Director, John Keitel, and main star, Daniel Chilson (Griff), not only show us, the viewer, what it is like to be confused, gay and vulnerable, they also deliver the themes of coming-out in a time of gay-bashing and what it is like to be young and gay in fresh, poignant fashion. Definitely a must see, especially if you are looking to affirm your own beliefs or understand a culture that is different than your own.

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews