Entertainment » Movies

From Hollywood To Dollywood

by Padraic Maroney
Contributor
Friday Aug 31, 2012
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The things that important in childhood help shape you as an adult. For a pair of brothers, their childhood love of Dolly Parton has led them to write a script to help them exorcise their emotions about their sexuality and the stance their family takes. "Hollywood to Dollywood" is a wandering journey of coming to grips with yourself and what it takes to make a dream come true.

Reality TV contestants Gary and Larry Lane love Dolly Parton, one of the memories from their childhood that has helped their entire family bond. They have written a script for a film that they want their favorite icon to star in, and have decided to drive from Los Angeles to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, to hand the script to Parton herself. Along the way they discuss what it was like to grow up gay in South, and how Dolly Parton has affected people.

In the beginning of the film the Lane twins come across as borderline obsessed with the singer in a way that could end with a restraining order. They are determined to get her to read their script and won’t leave until the script is in her hands.

Making matters worse, they talk to some industry friends before taking off to get advice. People like Chad Allen, who’s also a producer on the film, Dustin Lance Black, and Leslie Jordan, who encourage the brothers on their plan. But the encouragement seems halfhearted, similarly to the way all kids in little league are given trophies regardless of how bad their team might be.

"Dollywood" works best in the final moments, when the main storyline is the focal point. Throughout the rest of the film, there isn’t a clear focus as the Lane twins jump between talking about their personal experience and the impact of Dolly’s work and career, as well as talking with other people about their experience of being gay. They would have been better suited with the help of a more thorough editor to weed out the extraneous material and give the film a more cohesive narrative.

The emotional pull comes from the twins trying to get through to their religious mother by sending her a copy of their script, which deals with all of the issues they can’t talk to her about directly. Not enough time is spent on this subplot, and the brief footnote it gets in the epilogue doesn’t help much to explore the situation with their mother.

The journey to get to Dollywood is more of the story than the end result. The brothers have poured their soul into the film. They may have tunnel vision about their ambition to get their film made, but the movie that’s resulted doesn’t have a clear idea of what it wants to accomplish.

Comments

  • Anonymous, 2012-06-16 02:00:17

    This article was originally written in July of 2011 by Philly Edge. In the last year we have played in over 50 film festivals around the world. Won 22 Best Documentary Awards, and appeared on the Rosie Odonell Show on OWN Network. Also 2 weeks ago Dolly signed the contracts granting us continued use of her 15 songs in the film. I think we have proven the film has merit and substance. I wish you would have asked us for a link so you could have watched the film, and given us an original review. Thanks, Gary and Larry Lane - www.hollywoodtodollywood.com


  • Anonymous, 2012-06-16 15:40:36

    Documentaries always reach deep into the heart as they tell real stories. They are especially relatable when they effect us with their LGBT issues as do a lot of film with Frameline36, San Francisco’s LGBT International Film Festival, playing through June 24 at Bay Area theatres. One of the highlights of this or any other Frameline festival is "Hollywood to Dollywood." What can easily be dismissed as two sexy twins from the South trying to come up with a scheme to present the script they wrote to Dolly Parton really tells a more poignant story. Yes the twins love Dolly and wrote a screenplay with her in mind and yes the movie features 15 Dolly songs and has won a couple of Best Documentary awards. View slideshow: Gay documentaries reach the heart But the heart of the film is the people Gary and Larry Lane meet on their way to Dollywood - other Southern Baptists who have been disowned by their families and ridiculed for being gay. Additionally the film is quite the travelogue, showing the South from the road as the twins drive from Los Angeles to Tennessee. The love the twins share with their partners is also endearing. Advertisement "Hollywood to Dollywood" screens Thursday, June 21 at 7pm at Berkeley’s Elmwood Theatre and Saturday, June 23 at 7pm at San Francisco’s Victoria Theatre.


  • Anonymous, 2012-06-16 15:44:09

    We will see you all at FRAMELINE! We will be there Live doing questions and Answers after each Screening! SEE you all there and HAPPY PRIDE! Larry and Gary www.lanetwins.com Hmmmm... Dolly Loved our Documentary and our Message! thats the Only Opinion we Need and her stamp of approval means the World!!!!


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