a film by John Lavin
2011 | 78 mins | US
›› Hollywood to Dollywood
a heart-warming journey about life and love.
Hollywood to Dollywood by John Lavin
Official Synopsis:-

Twin brothers Gary and Larry Lane have written a screenplay with a perfect role for their idol Dolly Parton, so they decide to set off on a cross-country road trip to personally deliver the screenplay to Dolly herself.

With a soundtrack featuring 15 classic Dolly Parton songs, this feel-good documentary follows the brothers and their band of intrepid travelers as they meet everyday Americans, dodge floods and tornadoes, search for sexual acceptance, while realizing their biggest dream: delivering their screenplay to Dolly.
Hollywood to Dollywood by John Lavin
Dave Says:-

With a tag line that reads "two brothers, a screenplay and an RV named Jolene," you could be forgiven for thinking that this is a variant on ...Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Yet and in as much as both films share common ground; a road trip backed by a vibrant soundtrack, that is more or less where the similarities end, given this is a cutting documentary and in more ways, than one.

True and whilst the foundation stone of the piece is the charismatic Lane brothers overwhelming desire to personally hand their much worked on script "Full Circle" to their idol Dolly Parton, at the grand opening of the 25th anniversary of her Dollywood amusement park; there is more to their quest, than meets the eye. For behind all the glitz 'n' glam of a Knoxville "Night of 1,000 Dollys," lies a journey that turned out to be more eventful that what the boys could ever envisaged, having encountered a twister along the way, before having to make a required stopover in the country music capital of Nashville, only to find it a flood hit disaster area.

Yet that marks just another side of the story. As sandwiched between the inherent revisions of the screenwriting process, lies a film that at heart, is a coming out work. And it is here that their two thousand mile road trip takes its most poignant turn, as both Gary and Larry speak candidly about coming out to themselves as identical gay twins and the overwhelming support they found in each other, when faced with outright parental disapproval of their sexual orientation. Now in their mid-thirties and both with boyfriends, their confessions to camera showcase long suppressed emotions and no more so than in Larry's cutting comment that: "it's a horrible feeling not to be accepted. But it's the worst thing in the world not to be accepted by your family." Only theirs is not the sole coming out tale, as others are featured too, that of a series of commentaries that acutely illustrate the two-edged sword of rejection / acceptance; from the homophobic views of the religious right, to a son who's response to his father being gay, was simply: "I don't care who loves you, as long as someone loves you."

True and as many an aspiring screenwriter knows only too well, your first script will probably end up resting alongside a pile of other rejects, forever gathering dust. But that said, few scripts will have had the good fortune to have had a feature made about it, one that before the twins arrive in Pigeon Forge, takes in many a Southern State landmark, cue Graceland, before perhaps, just perhaps an appearance from Dolly herself.

Intercut with a series of spirited celebrity quips, including a line from Tennessee native Leslie Jordan that ends up almost stealing the show, this informative, yet equally entertaining documentary and by no surprise, celebrates the dreamer in you, in a work in which the religious fuelled homophobia of the land is nicely countered by a story of friendship, building bridges, let alone going for your goals in life. But above all, it is the story of being true to your sexual self, that stands tall here, aided by some toe-tapping songs from the Queen of Country. All of which makes for a heart-warming journey about life and love; Hollywood to Dollywood style, that's frankly a jolly good ride. Need more be said?

Gay Visibility - overt. 
Nudity - none. 
Overall - file under ... 3+ stars. 

›› Available to buy from Amazon.com.
available on DVD as part of the Breaking Glass Pictures catalogue: 6.November.2012 / US.
featuring, in order of appearance:
Gary Lane, Larry Lane, Mike Bowen, Chad Allen, Beth Grant, Ann Walker,
Manouschka Guerrier, Dustin Lance Black, Leslie Jordan
and perhaps an appearance from Dolly herself.
official website:
Copyright 2012 David Hall - www.gaycelluloid.com.
archive reference #532
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