P/REVIEW: Brian’s view from the sofa

Brian Butler March 23, 2020

Let’s make self-isolation more fun and productive with a new Gscene series. This new feature, brought by Gscene’s own self isolating arts critic Brian Butler aims to point you at on-line entertainment and also home deliveries .

Many people are now practising social distances have been advised by the Government to shield ourselves from any kind of social interaction or are in  self-isolation, and at a loose end.  Every theatre, cinema, pub, club and entertainment venue is closed, at a time when we are so in need of engaging uplifting contact and we all have so much time on our hands….

We aim to cover a wide range of opportunities to watch archive material from theatre, films, music and other activities like virtual museum tours. Most of what we will cover is free access but some may free trials and then a small subscription.

On the films front, here are some suggestions , which we’ll follow up and add to in later articles.

If you subscribe to Netflix, it lists lots of LGBTQ-themed movies. Here are some suggestions :

Moonlight – about a young black gay man growing up in a hostile society. Best Picture winner.

Philadelphia – a heartbreaker, starring Tom Hanks, detailing how the US Government turned its back on the reality of an epidemic – just a bit timely !

Other People– A gay man( Jesse Plemons)returns home to his conservative family to be with his cancer-stricken mother in this strangely comic piece.

The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson – the rumoured thrower of the first brick at Stonewall, who may or mayb not have committed suicide.

On a lighter note –

The Perfection is a crazy queer horror film , starring Allison Williams and Logan Browning – Psychological manipulation with campery – perfect !

Peccadillo Pictures is a distributor specialising in LGBTQ movies. It has a wonderful back catalogue and its current releases on video on demand (VOD ) include :

And Then They Danced – see my recent GScene review – a beautiful sad story of gay love in a repressive Eastern European society.

End Of The Century – an Argentinian poet , searching for a holiday romance in Barcelona, seems thwarted at every turn . Their whirlwind romance turns into a decades-spanning relationship , in which time and space refuse to play by the rules.

Peccadillo an be accessed via Vimeo, Apple TV, and Amazon.

It’s also running an online community , the Peccadillo Sofa Club .

Streaming of archived theatre performances are offered on a range of UK and US-based platforms, and we’ll review some of them in future articles. They include WhatsOnStage , the NY Metropolitan Opera, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln centre, Marie’s Crisis , the famous West Village piano bar.

If like me you’re classed as a ‘Vulnerable person’, there are lots of local delivery services, apart from the obvious big supermarket chains.


Many local shops, greengrocers, fish shops and butchers offer home delivery , including Sunday roasts , and you can check them out by looking up your local community chat group- especially on Facebook – like Rottingdean and Saltdean to name only two.

Other services include people who will collect your shopping or medication, free daily meditation classes and access to lots of educational material – a subject we’ll come back to.


Some of our best drag artistes tell me they are working on plans to do on-line streaming shows – we’ll keep you posted.

Finally as musical theatre genius Stephen Sondheim has just become 90, here are some relevant lyrics for these dark times.

Good times and bad times, I’ve seen them all and I’m here …. I’m still here.

No-one is alone- truly; no-one is alone.

Make the most of the music that is yours.

Any suggestions for inclusions in future issues ? Please send to and we’ll consider them.

So, stay tuned, check in to see what my most recent finds, suggestions and hot tops are and see you soon  – from the sofa. Stay safe !