Tying the Knot began as a personal journey
for me. I had fallen in love with my partner from Indonesia and we were
facing a common issue to many bi-national couples: How to stay together
when the government doesn't recognize your relationship. This personal
legal hurdle set me down a path of asking what role marriage has in
our society. I decided to make a short film on the subject which quickly
grew to an immense and fascinating project that is now in theaters.
So what is this documentary on marriage about? Tying
the Knot is a fast-paced tour of personal stories, history, and
legal and political fights around marriage. It looks at intimate stories
of a rancher and a cop who have lost their life partners and are faced
with losing pensions and farms. Stuff you can't believe is going on
in this day and age.
Tying the Knot is my essay on the subject
of marriage. Is it journalism? No. It isn't meant to be. I so profoundly
believe that gays and lesbians should have this equal right that I have
crafted a call-to-arms—a compelling film that argues unapologetically
that this is an issue of basic social justice.
But what about gays and lesbians who feel this is the wrong fight?
I think it is fine to have that point-of-view. But for those of us who
believe we should have the right, please don't stand in our way. And
please be informed on the subject. I thought years ago (before making
this film) that there was no need to mimic the straight institution
of marriage. I thought we, as the gay community, should be able to get
"beyond marriage"—develop our own ways of living. Well,
I now think that viewpoint misses some key issues.
First, there is no homogenous "gay community." We come in
all shapes and sizes, all economic backgrounds and geographic locations.
To say that we will all act and think of one mind is not true. The gay
movement should recognize the diversity of needs in all LGBT people
and that includes the want and need for some people to Tie the Knot!
In making this film I also came to understand that by gay and lesbian
couples participating in marriage we actually help to equalize the institution
for everyone. If two men or two women can marry equally as a man and
a woman, don't we undermine the patriarchy of the institution?
There is so much to consider on this subject! While Tying
the Knot can't possibly cover it all, we give an abundant amount
of food for thought. This isn't "Gay Weddings" on Bravo! Tying
the Knot is a personal and political exploration of the subject.
Get thee to the movie theater!