One must certainly wonder how decidedly derelict director Danny Leiner, being of the traditionally Hebraic Hollywood persuasion with such formulaic, vacuous comedic hits as Dude Where’s my Car? (2000) and Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle (2004) came to begin his career with Time Expired (1992), a semi-serious, and not particularly slapstick funny, but rather bizarre 30-minute short about a hyper masculine married wop whose latent homosexuality is unleashed after serving a two-year stint in the city jail while housed with a presumably Puerto-Rican, fiery latina transvestite cellmate. Indeed, Time Expired is a rather bizarre, yet enjoyable short film about the not so uncommon, but often unspoken of scenario of seemingly macho men finding their true lascivious homosexual selves in prison, and the often raucous ramifications that result from their lustful prison proclivities. Upon his exit from jail, Bobby (played by Bob Gosse) seems rather ambivalent about being reunited with his family who await him outside the prison gates. On the way out, however, his already mixed emotions about his release are further complicated when his former cellmate and lover, saucy latina tranny Ruby, decadently dressed to the nines in a sexy, short blue dress complete with a long, flowing black wig and sunglasses (played by the highly versatile John Leguizamo—whose many diverse roles range from portraying a sex-obsessed, possibly gay Guido in Summer of Sam (1999) to a nearly-brain dead half-Hispanic/half-Jewish hustler retard in King of the Jungle (2000)) walks by and asks him if he’d like to meet up later. Bobby, unsure of how to deal with the situation, immediately dismisses Ruby’s presence and eagerly walks over to his awaiting family—his chubby, short and unassuming mother, his semi-autistic comic books obsessed brother Burt, and his young, faithful wife, Ginny (played by Edie Falco of Sopranos fame in one of her earliest roles). Bobby feigns excitement at seeing his forgiving family after being in jail for a presumably cum-in-the-butt filled two years with his Latin lover Ruby (after apparently having been charged with “ripping off over 1,000 parking meters,” which is somewhat suggestive of kleptomaniac tendencies, which seem to be strikingly common among homosexuals, including my beloved flaming fag uncle), and returns home only to fall into a drunken, unemployed slump in which his pretty and forgiving and decidedly tame for an Italian wife Ginny can’t help but feel sorry for her ex-con husband who, unbeknownst to her, is incessantly ruminating about and lusting after the sweet and spicy Latina ass of his tranny lover, Ruby.
Barely able to concentrate even on shitty afternoon cartoons while staying at home one day, Bobby finally gives Ruby a call and asks if she’d like to meet him at the local park, as covertly as possible of course, for fear of his family discovering that he is a lustful horndog of a homo with a predilection for a cross-dressing maricon. Ruby happily obliges and attires herself accordingly in her favorite black wig and sexy red dress, only to find that Bobby is twenty minutes late for their presumed encounter of afternoon delight in the park. Ruby, predictably tiffed by his lateness yet very excited to see Bobby, remarks, “You’re twenty minutes late—that’s how late you are!” and “You’re way too flaco—you need a latina to make you some pollo!” is beyond dismayed when Bobby coldly tells her he only met up with her to say that he needs two months time to get his life in order, and that between now and then, the two of them can’t carry on any kind of relationship. Ruby, in characteristically hot-blooded Hispanic response, is beyond dismayed by Bobby’s plans and leaves immediately, but not before slapping him when he leans in for a kiss, and then giving him the finger and flamboyantly flashing her ass in anger. Later in the evening, Ruby goes to the local gay bar, dressed from head-to-toe like Marilyn Monroe, and washes away her sorrows in a dipsomanic fit after being told by the bartender, “You know, he’s just a breeder” and responding, “I know. That’s what I like about him,” demonstrating that the little latin lover is still clearly quite obsessed with her Italian boy-toy and truly distraught over his looming, self-imposed two-month hiatus from their admittedly awkward, yet intense love-making sessions.
Ultimately, Time Expired rings true to its meaning with a somewhat open-ended conclusion in which Bobby peers in at the window to Ruby’s salon, seemingly begging for forgiveness and for her to take him back, only for Ruby to shake her head at him in disbelief at his desperation. While Time Expired is by no means a masterpiece of any sort, cinematically or thematically, it certainly does make for a brief yet highly enjoyable viewing, particularly for those entranced by John Leguizamo’s always enthralling and diverse personas, ranging from stereotypical mafia gangsters to hot-blooded homos to raunchy retards. And the film is also an insightful exercise in what it must be like for previously masculine men, having found their true salacious selves in prison, to make the real-life, outside of prison transition from being former lily-lickers to presently equally semen-spewing and semen-loving homos with a predilection for lustful man-ladies. And, finally, Time Expired proves that, while the old saying may go that “hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,” even those who are not biologically ladies are no exception to the rule, especially those of the hot-headed and fiery Latina tranny variety.
-Magda von Richthofen zu Reventlow auf Thule