Brokeback Mountain is a 2005 film directed by Ang Lee, starring Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Williams, and Anne Hathaway. It is based on the short story by Annie Proulx, which was originally published in The New Yorker in 1997.
The film is about two men, Ennis Del Mar and Jack Twist, who meet when they take the same herding job up on Brokeback Mountain. Great tension forms between the two until it eventually boils over one drunken night, when Jack makes a pass at Ennis. The two end up having a romantic tryst, even though they know it cannot last, particularly when they each go back home and marry different women. Still, they are tied to one another for years to come, in a way that nobody -- not even they themselves -- could understand.
This is first and foremost a love story. It's probably one of the most mainstream LGBTQ films of all time, having earned several Oscar nominations at the 2006 Academy Awards. It carried around a lot of stigma, being labelled the "gay cowboy film", but it's so much more than that. It's about two people who love each other deeply, but due to circumstances beyond their control, they're unable to be together. This destroys them inside, as is evident through the fantastic performances of both Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.
This has gone on to become one of my favourite films. It may be a tad Hollywoodized, sure, but it's still heartwrenching and beautiful. If nothing else, it's worth watching for the stellar acting and wonderful soundtrack by Gustavo Santaolalla.
The film is rated R and has a running time of 134 minutes.
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