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Marine Story, A (Blu-ray Review)

25 Jan, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Prebook 1/25/11; Street 3/15/11
$24.95 DVD, $29.95 Blu-ray
Not rated.
Stars Dreya Weber, Paris Pickard.

The problem with many LGBT movies is not their perceived overt sexuality, but rather that they aren’t very good stories.

Independent effort A Marine Story doesn’t have that predicament. In fact, it is one of the better films of 2010, if not on par with Golden Globe nominee Winter’s Bone.

The movie’s foundation revolves around star Dreya Weber (The Gymnast), whose heady performance (and impressive abs) as patriotic, middle-aged Marine Alexandra Everett expertly showcases a proud soldier with multiple tours in the Middle East undermined by the government’s head-in-the-sand “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

When unsolicited e-mails suggesting a lesbian relationship emerge, the married (yet closeted) Everett chooses an honorable discharge rather than face a military hearing. Devastated, Everett returns to her dusty central California hometown. Unsure of her future, she does what any red-blooded vet would: head to the nearest bar and drown her sorrows.

“Failure ain’t the falling down; it’s the staying down,” Everett says.

While she was away in the military, Everett’s hometown (like the Missouri outback in Winter’s Bone) has become infested with small-time crystal-meth labs as the economy and lack of jobs wreak their havoc.

After single-handedly subduing a drug-addled couple attempting to rob a convenience store, Everett is asked by the local sheriff to take the young female offender, Saffron Snow (Paris Pickard from gay reality TV show “Gimme Sugar”), and prepare her for the military instead of probable incarceration.

The ensuing bond between the two women does not veer into stereotypical fawning as Everett overcomes growing affection for Snow with a steely sense of duty.

Problems soon arise when Everett is photographed hooking up with another woman she meets at a lesbian bar, and small-town bigotry erupts in all of its glory. “Hoorah,” indeed.

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