Synopsis by Mark Deming
While many Christian Fundamentalist sects firmly believe that homosexuality is a violation of God's law and a mortal sin, a growing number of Fundamentalist parents have had to come to terms with the fact that their children are gay or lesbian, and documentary filmmaker Arthur Dong focuses on a handful of young adults who have come out to staunchly conservative families, and been forced to confront the pain and confusion that can cause. Brett Matthews, the son of a Mormon bishop, was dismissed from the Air Force after his homosexuality became public knowledge, and must now face ostracism by his parents. Kathleen Bremner, the leader of a Pentecostal congregation, is also the mother of a lesbian woman, Susan Jester (and the grandmother of a gay man, David Jester); she has since joined a group that advocates "reparative" therapy for homosexuals. And Brian Bennett spent 12 years working for conservative California congressman Bob Dornan. Bennett and Dornan became quite close, with the congressman often saying he felt as if Bennett was his adopted son, but that changed when Bennett chose to come out of the closet. Family Fundamentals was screened in competition at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival.
coming-out, homosexual, ostracism, parent/child-relationship, conservative, fundamentalism, Christianity, stubbornness