I guess Laurence and I are in the minority on this one.
I haven't seen the movie, so I'm unsure of the specific context in which the word "fag" is used.
But I'm deeply troubled that people think there is any appropriate space to use that offensive epithet. You can't "take back" or simply "choose to ignore" a word that has a history and meaning that is specifically meant to stigmatize LGBT people.
And even more, I can't believe that anyone who identifies as LGBT would use that word with each other or especially to their younger siblings. In fact, there were two young boys who committed suicide this past year after being bullied at school and called epithets like "fag." So, when we use that word to others, you better be sure that it will then be repeated by others.
I think the use of that word today represents the lack of any LGBT social movement for our rights that would give people pride in ourselves and in our community. Use of the word "fag" doesn't represent some sort of progress that "30-somethings and older" just don't get. it represents a retrograde normalization of heterosexism, and it also signifies the overall conservatism of the political climate of the past 30 years.
Out of the Stonewall Revolt of '69, Gay Liberation Front (GLF) chapters sprung up all around the country that were anti-imperialist, fought homophobia, and encouraged people to come out of the closet.
A Gay Liberation Manifesto was published in 1972 that said:
Anti-homosexual morality and ideology, at every level of society, manifest themselves in a special vocabulary for denigrating gay people. There is abuse like 'pansy', 'fairy', 'lesbo' to hurl at men and women who can't or won't fit stereotyped preconceptions. There are words like 'sick', 'bent' and 'neurotic' for destroying the credence of gay people. . . . The ideological intent of our language makes it very clear that the generation of words and meanings is, at the moment, in the hands of the enemy. And that so many gay people pretend to be straight, and call each other 'butch dykes' or 'screaming queens' [or I would add 'fag'!] only makes that fact the more real.
The verbal attack on men and women who do not behave as they are supposed to, reflects the ideology of masculine superiority.
Today, we have stereotypical portrayals of effete, wealthy gay men on TV (Will and Grace and America's Next Top Model, eg.), and we have shows like The Simpsons and movies which use "fag" repeatedly. I'm sorry folks but that isn't that type of progress we need...