((Here is my approach to obtaining/viewing/reviewing Gay tales in film form. Simply, it's seeking the holy grail of that genre, or looking for the "Addictive Film"---that movie one returns to time and again). Selection/purchase is based mainly on finding new releases by favorite directors/screenwriters and your comments/reviews at various on-line sites. Sometimes I feel correctly steered by you (the "Keepers" filling my DVD shelves), other times mislead, occasionally badly (the "Throwaways"----and I do toss 'em). Rarely, I come across the "Addictive," those watchable every couple of months or so (see below starred *** area for a list......and some of the "near-Addictive" as well). For some movies, I'll share a review with you, as follows. Thanks for sticking with me so far.))
I'll admit that on first watching I was mightily disappointed, particularly in view of what I consider C. Jay Cox's much better, gay-related work, "Latter Days (Unrated Edition)." However, repeat viewings of "Bride" have resulted in my initial impression taking on a somewhat more positive spin, as you may gather from other of my comments, below. In this work it seems the director and writer are trying to tell.....no, make that show.....us that sexual preference (if not also orientation), is not just a black or white, a yes or no thing; rather it's a continuum and can change over time. Still, even if you consider that theme to be well handled, in no way does this production come close to achieving/maintaining the high interest levels being attained by that other recent gay film, "Shelter," directed by newcomer Jonah Markowitz.}
If by now you're wondering, this movie......if it's anything......is a "seriocomedy." It is NOT a gay romance (although at an earlier, teenage time in our two male leads' lives, there might have been the beginning spark of romance). No, come to think of it, even then it was more likely to have been just youthful lust. So, with that out of the way, you might ask how this production works as a semi-serious comedy. On this, all I can say is that in such a genre, comic timing is everything, and I suspect that comedy performance has not been in the background of either of our male leads (but older, supporting cast members Tess Harper and Robert Foxworth keep the chuckles coming fairly reliably). Karner / O'Shea almost get it on the button at times.......but a successful comedy needs more than "almost" when it comes to timing. Still, what Philipp Karner (Matt) does do well is deliver sincerity---and you're going to like him for that. And then there's James O'Shea (Ryan), who effectively gives us a "confused sweetness"---you'll fall for that as well. Oh, yes, and he also "puts out" for us in the form of a good looking face and an excellent body (and er, ahem, that includes a great ass and a nice package---more than enough there to have shared with a Karner, who could stand a "boost" in those departments). As for Spelling, I'm not a "Tori-fan," but she does come across as miles better here than she was in another gay film, "Trick."
Along with secondary character actress Amber Benson, we also have Steve Sandvoss, and both are "carryovers" from "Latter Days." Sandvoss' character and a "buddy," played by Michael Medico, are given fairly frightful parts in the opinion of this viewer. Even so, it's too bad that whoever put together/approved the Cast List for the film's Closing Credits didn't know enough to realize they'd gotten these two player's character names reversed (that must make one feel good as an actor).
One last point, for those of you who might keep up with such things: Karner does get from O'Shea a lot better lip-locks (both in quality and number) than does Spelling. How about them apples?
PS--This DVD won't get tossed out in the trash (as some have been)----but it's hardly likely to make it onto this viewer's "Addictive" list*** either. Oh, and we appear to have a couple of Ty Lieberman fans here; which is fine---although they don't appear to have reviewed anyone else's films at this site.
***Other films which are habit formers: "Just a Question of Love" / "Brokeback Mountain" / "Boy Culture" / "All Over the Guy" / "Second Skin (Unrated Version)" / "The Man I Love" / "The Man of My Life" (perhaps for older, gay-thinking viewers) / "OH HAPPY DAY (DVD MOVIE)" (do youselves a big favor and see this one) / "Fashion Victims" (only on Region 2 disc so far---try Amazon.comUnitedKingdom).