Please rack your brain to tell me when was the last time you watched a pretty great gay rom-com with a big heart. I will wait. Queer stories are so rare- with queer people playing queer people for a change, that when a film this contemporary arrives, it immediately feels like a breath of fresh air. But as cliché as that term sounds, Bros (2022) features an entirely LGBTQ cast of principal actors and is also ferociously funny- which is pretty much groundbreaking, considering how queer stories are always so painfully sad and depressing (a quip that one of the main characters from Bros correctly notes.)
A brainchild of Billy Eichner ( the host of the series Billy on the Street), who co-wrote with director Nicholas Stoller, Bros has that whip-smart, hilarious power that places it squarely in the genre’s most referenced titles – You’ve Got Mail and When Harry Met Sally. Yet, Bros, produced by the team that gave us Bridesmaids and Trainwreck, is so much more than these names. It drops pointedly in due time and establishes its world with confidence. If you haven’t watched Bros, do not go ahead with this analysis, as it contains major spoilers. Just watch it already! For the rest, speed ahead.
Bros (2022) Plot Summary And Movie Synopsis
Set in New York, Bros revolves around the 40-something influential gay man named Bobby, who is gearing up for the inauguration of the LGBTQ history museum- the first of its kind. When he meets the handsome hunk Aaron at a gay nightclub, he doesn’t have any expectations of a relationship. They text each other, which always starts with the running line- “Hey bro, what’s up?” But slowly, they start to spend time together, and Bobby realizes that Aaron cleverly hides his vulnerable side beneath the tough exterior.
They explore each other- counting the threesome(s) and reveal a lot about their perceptions in the process. Aaron helps Bobby seal a 5 million dollar funding for the museum, whereas Bobby’s confidence and charisma slowly give Aaron the confidence to confront his own desires. But is Aaron attracted to Bobby? Bobby’s confidence, among other things, doesn’t really hold space for Bobby to speak up or express his own insecurities until tensions arise.
Bros (2022) Movie Review
Bros ticks off the tried-and-tested rom-com tropes – the rambling, hard-to-please protagonist, the chance encounter, the initial getting-to-know-each-other, and the sex – and infuses with a strong undercurrent of place and time. We meet Bobby (a superb Billy Eichner), who is a 40-something gay, fully aware of his status as a gay man- he wins an award named the “cis-gay white man of the year” if anyone’s looking. He is smart and confident and has a brazenness about him that bites when required. When he meets Aaron (Luke Macfarlane) at a gay club, he discards him for what he represents: a stereotypical physically attractive gay man who is “boring.” Yet, as they would discover after spending time with each other (beyond sex) that Aaron is more than that- his hidden depths make him more gorgeous.
Their personalities couldn’t be more contrasting: Bobby is the outgoing gay activist running his own podcast and investing in his dream of opening the first LGBTQ museum of its kind in New York. Aaron is a legal advisor who knows exactly how to gather information from his customer. Their scenes crackle with dollops of wit and authentic anxieties of queer people. Bros build the supporting characters well, none of whom feel like caricatures and exist as their own selves. Special mention to the members of the staff with whom Bobby plans the museum- those scenes are so brutally hilarious that they will make you laugh until it hurts. The writing is razor-sharp and nuanced- with truth bombs about toxic gay dating culture comes sporadic history about the LGBTQ+ with mentions of Marsha P. Johnson, Abraham Lincoln, and Stonewall.
Also, Read – On Class And Queer Love: The Particularity Of Films About Migrants Pride
Eichner can play Bobby even while sleepwalking, and honestly, when he does it so well, there’s no point complaining. There was a real chance his performance could backfire as a loud caricature, but Eichner superbly stitches the quieter conflicts of his character. His monologue about the way he has had to build confidence as a defense mechanism to catch up on things is my favorite moment in the film. As for Macfarlane, Aaron is miles above the boring top with a great physique. To Macfarlane’s credit, Aaron’s vulnerabilities become a painful reminder of the heteronormative standards queer people have to face.
Bros wear its queerness loud and clear, and if it’s too gay for you, the film proves its point all the more. It is an instant classic. A huge heart drives the comedy, and you forgive the minor inconsistencies in the plot and the predictably sweet denouement because, guess what- it is more than enough that a film with two gay male protagonists exists. It is better than just enough that Bros understands the absurdity of modern gay culture incredibly well. Straight actors don’t play the characters as the Academy Awards desires, with a depressing ending. It is about damn time.
Bros (2022) Movie Ending Explained
The problem starts when Aaron tells Bobby to “tone it down” during Christmas when Aaron’s parents come to New York for a short visit. Bobby is a little unsure of what to feel about it and proceeds to interact with Aaron’s parents over dinner, where he rails against his mother that children should be taught about queer history from a young age. This blows up to such an extent that Aaron has to intervene in between with a threat that more or less sounds like shut up or I will kill you. Aaron storms off, leaving Bobby alone. Later, Bobby catches Aaron making out with his childhood crush Josh (Ryan Faucett), and confronts him, saying he knew that Aaron was not attracted to him in the first place. They break it off that instant.
What happens to the LGBTQ History Museum?
Bobby, flustered after the breakup and on steroids- cannot handle the news that the Lincoln show at the museum is being taken off due to protests. He makes a huge mess in front of everyone, and everyone has to intervene to stop him from wreaking more havoc. He returns to the gym, where he hooks up with a black man, who catches him off guard by faking his masculine accent. On the other hand, Aaron is guilt-ridden over the entire thing and finally decides to follow his passion and make his own chocolates. He shows them to Bobby over a video message. He leaves his job and takes this business full-time.
Do Bobby and Aaron get back together?
As Aaron talks about his breakup with his brother, he realizes that he has fallen in love with Bobby all this while and that he needs to get over himself and make a move. At the museum’s opening, Bobby tells Tina that although he misses him, he won’t return to him because he won’t get hurt again. But he also knows that if there’s anyone who makes him happy, it is Aaron. He leaves a “Hey bro, what’s up?” text to him, and the moment Aaron sees it, he is encouraged by his brother to get it right.
He arrives at the museum just as Bobby is about to make his speech. Bobby then goes on to sing the song he had written for him, and when the song ends, they both kiss and propose to each other to everyone’s applause. They decide to take three months to give time to their relationship. The film ends right after three months when their relationship is still going strong. Aaron’s mother has come with her second-grade students to show the museum. When Bobby asks if Aaron wants kids, he runs!