The History Boys (Movie)

Last night, Peter and I had a chance to watch a movie together, something we haven’t been able to do for quite a while. We chose one of our Netflix options, a movie called The History Boys. It seemed like it ought to be good: it was about British prep school boys (and who doesn’t like movies with English prep school boys?), set in the 1980s. But it was pretty pointless.

Here’s the spoiler, so you don’t waste time on the movie. Inexplicably, every single one of the candidates gets into Oxford’s History department, whether they wanted to or not, thanks to the help of one eccentric gay teacher who trains them to spontaneously act out vignettes in French, and a new school teacher who teaches them to just make stuff up on essays, cuz that’s the sort of stuff that’ll impress the admissions board at Oxford.

Once they’ve matriculated to Oxford, everyone abruptly comes out with his homesexuality. The ignorant stuffy headmaster comes to his senses and reinstates the eccentric gay teacher, whom he’d sacked for fondling the boys, even though none of them really minded. The new teacher (who is, of course, now openly gay) takes a joy ride with the eccentric gay teacher, whereupon they have an accident and one of them dies. The only character who may not have been gay dies when he grows up and gets shot in an Army regiment which hasn’t existed since 1968.

The end. It just reminded me that all English men are gay, even if they’re straight, just as all Italian men are straight, even if they’re gay. Is that really so? Anyway, you might like the early 80s songs, if you’re into that sort of thing.

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