PRICK UP YOUR EARS wasn’t deemed to break box-office records in Peoria. The story of mid-60s British homosexual playwright Joe Orton and his boyfriend is not designed for post-Superbowl fare. Excellently acted by Gary Oldman, Alfred Molina, Vanessa Redgrave, Julie Walters and Wallace Shawn, under typically attentive direction from Stephen Frears.
The characters of the reckless, flamboyant Orton and his brooding mate/murderer Kenneth Halliwell aren’t exactly endearing audience-pleasers, due to their off-putting behavior—not their mating preference. That second aspect isn’t the focus of the film, at any rate, it’s taken matter-of-fact, which will likely leave most Joe Average Straight Dudes reaching for a copy of Kelly’s Heroes or Predator. From 1987, running 105 minutes.