Cubby is a coming of age queer dramedy from the mind of Mark Blane, who also directs and stars in the film. Its premise is simple: an immature 26-year-old relocates to New York on false pretenses and discovers the core of who he really is in the process. It’s an age-old tale with a psychoactive twist.

Currently making its Inside Out debut, Cubby has been the target of conservative opposition before audiences even laid eyes on it. The film is a product of a successful crowdsourcing campaign – which also made it the topic of conversation – and the interaction between its leading males is making naysayers uncomfortable.


Although the trio doesn’t share any scenes together, it features a gay babysitter, a fictional male sex worker, and a six-year-old boy. The concern is that the exposure will “make the child gay.” Blane, however, is no stranger to criticism and has made it clear that the film’s mission is to challenge viewers to see the complexity of human relationships – and it does that quite effectively.

When we first meet Mark (Mark Blane), he’s an absent-minded artist who has lived under his mother’s thumb. Through his interactions with the newcomers in his world (and a bad habit), he becomes acutely aware of who he is and what he’s capable of as an artist, a caretaker, and a romantic partner.

Not surprisingly, Blane is the star and the standout in Cubby. His performance carries the film through bad dialogue and awkwardly timed jokes and takes viewers on Mark’s rollercoaster of self-discovery. While his story isn’t wholly relatable, it certainly leaves you with food for thought about your own life and the relationships that have formed you.

Sunday, May 26, 3:30 PM, TIFF Bell Lightbox