Maybe the sad protagonist in the 2003 Sundance lab-bred indie The Mudge Boy could hang out with the owlish, melancholy kid from ''Valentin.'' Emile Hirsch (''The Girl Next Door'') gives 14-year-old Duncan Mudge a fine, spongy center of dead-mother longing. But really, what can we make of an oddball farm kid who comforts himself by dressing in his late mama's clothes and likes to pop the head of his live pet chicken into his mouth -- to soothe both himself and the flustered fowl? Duncan's taciturn father (Richard Jenkins) is understandably unsettled by his strange son; Duncan's sexually confused friend (Tom Guiry) is angrily aroused by him. It's not the homosexuality that's dubious here, it's the chicken.