“[A] slice-of-life piece of history with a Canadian perspective.” — Barry Ralph , Revue Francaise d’Economie
“[O]ffers an interesting non-American perspective on gay films of the last two decades. . . . The film student . . . will find this book essential.” — Community News (Salem OR)
“[Waugh’s] project—as it has been throughout his publications—is expansive, appealing, coalition building, and unabashedly specific as much as it is searingly witty, Maoist in its self-critical urges, and intellectually alive to change.” — Amy Villarejo, GLQ
“Witty, ironic, and always passionate. . . . [A]n inspiration to countless would-be gay film journalists and an invaluable study source for queer film buffs.” — Gay Times
"In a period of just over two decades Thomas Waugh has established himself as a respected public intellectual whose important work as an activist, critic, educator, and historian brings together theory and practice in innovative and enlightening ways. The Fruit Machine features a wide spectrum of work culled from material written for academic conferences, scholarly journals, and popular magazines. Collectively, these writings reflect the author’s impressive scope of expertise and experience, and illustrate the dramatic shifts in the political environment and in media criticism over the past twenty years. . . . [A]n engrossing self-portrait . . . . Waugh’s writings form a cohesive and coherent work that is theoretically informed, politically charged, and eminently readable. His brilliantly argued and thoughtfully-written critiques represent a high point in intellectual writing; they illustrate beyond a shadow of a doubt that film and cultural criticism can be informative, provocative, and above all, accessible–and even entertaining."
— Robert Cagle , Canadian Journal of Film Studies
“This is an enthralling book about a topic at once life-affectingly important and extraordinarily complex: how gay people—or anyone else—are seen and see themselves and how the movies help shape that. Tom Waugh shows us in exemplary fashion that you can combine personal passion and political engagement with the highest standards of intellectual discipline, while taking us on a delicious trip through the vagaries of queer film images.” — Richard Dyer, University of Warwick
“Tom Waugh was thinking queerly about the movies for decades before the New Queer Cinema was a market niche, but without his careful thinking and charming interventions, it’s hard to imagine the present cultural moment. Back when being gay was anything but fashionable, Waugh taught and fought, proselytized and organized, so that queer films and queer audiences would be taken seriously.” — B. Ruby Rich, author of Chick Flicks: Theories and Memories of the Feminist Film Movement