Feb 26, 2024

"The Cat and the Moon": Coming of Age Movie with drugs, a gay couple, and a gay subtext


The Cat and the Moon (2019) was advertised as a "coming of age" movie with Alex Wolff (left) playing an updated Holden Caulfield.  So I  went in expecting depression, drugs, suicide, heterosexual machinations, and rampant homophobia. I found lots of drugs, suicidal ideations, insanity, and heterosexual romance, but no homophobia, and so many gay subtexts that I couldn't keep track of who was in love with whom.  

Nick (Alex Wolff) moves to New York City while his mom is in rehab, stays with his dad's old buddy, and gets involved in a lot stuff.  This review will only cover the gay subtext scenes.

The NSFW version contains some frontal, obscured, and bulge shots.

Scene 1:
Nick's first day in school.  Skyler (Giulian Yao Gioello, left), hot for the new guy, befriends him and shows him around.

Scene 2: In algebra class, two stoner buds are playing a game involving fluttering their hands together. 

Scene 3:  Nick is in the restroom, trying to get high with a bong made of a toilet paper roll, when the stoner buds come in, bickering like an old married couple and talking like "he got into my motherfuckin' grill, yo."  

One stands at the urinal; the other doesn't have to go, so he just stands nearby to get a peek at his bud's penis.

They find Nick and introduce themselves as Seamus and Russell.  Seamus invites Nick to a party Friday night.

"Wait -- will your girlfriend be there?"  Russell asks.  


"Fuck!  You never pay attention to me when she's around."  To Nick: "His balls just evaporate when she's around." That must make sex difficult.

Scene 4;
The party was cancelled, so Russell (the gay one, played by Tommy Nelson, far left) invites Nick to go to a club with him and his good buddy Skyler, who cruised Nick in Scene 1.  Seamus and his Girlfriend will also be there.  So when they go out, it's Skyler-his girlfriend and Russell-his boyfriend, get it?  

On the way, Russell and his good buddy argue and break up.  The Girlfriend tells Nick not to worry: they break up all the time, but get back together again. "Honestly, I think they just secretly want to fuck each other."  Ok, so it's not a subtext.

They end up partying on the roof. Russell (the gay one) and Seamus kiss.  Wait, I thought you had other partners.

Later, while Russell helps Seamus with an overdose, Nick and The Girlfriend bond.

Scene 5:
Nick has lunch with Seamus (Skyler Gisondo, left), who reveals that he cheated last night, before his overdose: he got a handjob from "someone."  He doesn't say who, and neither of the guys use gender pronouns, leaving open the possibility that it was with a boy .

Scene 6:  A roomful of guys hanging out.  Seamus asks Russell (the gay one) to rap about buttholes. Apparently everyone knows that he's a butthole expert.  

He starts out: "This my boy Seamus, fucking on an anus."  Tell me more.  

"Young Russ, I'm reckless, I wreck chicks."  He pauses. "No, that's not right."  Of course not.  You meant "wreck dudes."  

Scene 7:
The Girlfriend invites them to another party  The four guys, Russell, his boyfriend Skyler, Seamus, and Nick, head out, engaging in youthful hijinks.  On the subway, Seamus pretends that he is getting oral sex from Russell.  Wait, I thought Russell was with Skyler, and Nick was with Seamus. The other guys laugh.

They try to pick up some drugs for the party, but almost get shot when Russell refers to the dealer (Quincy Chad, left) as "My N....."  He tries to explain that it's a rap term, but the dealer pulls a gun and asks if Russell would like it in his mouth. Ok, a reference to oral sex.  Figures that it would be Russell.

 The guys run away, and divide into two couples to cuddle and recuperate:  Russell/Skyler and Nick/Seamus.  So Russell and Skyler are like canonical boyfriends, and Nick and Seamus have a gay-subtext friendship?  Or are they falling in love?

The Girlfriend and her friend arrive.  Seamus tries to kiss her (because he feels bad about doing things with other people?) but she won't let him.  She wonders why he's so interested in kissing, all of a sudden. "Since when do you care about that?"  Yeah, kissing girls, yuck!

More after the break

Scene 8
: The party.  Seamus may not like kissing girls, but he's fine with going down on a random girl while The Girlfriend is occupied.  Nick catches them.

Meanwhile, Russell-Skyler and a random bud played by Camrus Johnson (left) are getting high.  Nick joins them.  They hug and frolick.  Wait, I thought your gay-subtext boyfriend was Seamus.  

Then he hooks up with The Girlfriend. They start an affair.

Scene 9: Seamus wants to know why Nick has been ghosting him lately.  "Well, um, I've been really busy...."   "Well, hang out with me and my girlfriend later." Awkward!

Scene 10: Nick is so upset over betraying his friend that he cries, hugs his uncle, considers suicide, and then comes clean.  Seamus decks him, but then forgives him.  The Girlfriend dumped him, anyway.  Time to give Russell a shot.   

Nick is moving away, but as a parting gift, he gives Seamus a book on dirty French phrases.  "You always said you wanted to learn French, so..."  Dude, that wasn't the kind of French he meant.

Scene 11: Another party, Russell is there with his boyfriend Skyler, but then he starts arguing with Seamus, like they're long-term partners.   I'm confused -- which one is Russell dating?

Beefcake: Just some of Nick's chest as he prepares for sex.

Gay Characters: Russell and Skyler.  Neither looks at or mentions a girl, and they are both hot for guys, especially each other.  But neither is openly identified as gay.

Gay Subtexts: Seamus and Nick are probably straight or bi, with a subtext romance mediated by their shared interest in the Girlfriend. 

My Grade: B-.  In 2019, why not just Say the Word?

The NSFW version is on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

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