The Circle ★★★½

An informative peak into the gay scene of mid-20th century Zurich. It's unconventionally structured as a docudrama and dramatization. Ernst Ostertag is a teacher who falls in love with entertainer Röbi Rapp. They become contributors to "The Circle", a ground-breaking magazine for gay men that was founded during WWII. The docudrama approach is really quite touching—as Ernst and Röbi are still together in 2014, are two adorable octogenarians and explain the hardships they faced in a more backwards time. In the past tense, it drew me into such vintage period detail. Both actors who play Ernst and Röbi are commendable, too, and you get a sense of what it was like when they originally met and fell in love. I'm not sure whether it smoothly maneuvers between the past and present. I'm not even sure if it's so adept at defining a genre. But it's great at establishing a circumstance—what it was like at the time, and although homosexuality was not illegal, it shows the difficulties for gay men in the 50's. I sure appreciated its storytelling at the very least. I enjoyed it. It opened a window. It fascinated me.