Pornography: A Thriller
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Crazily ambitious debut thriller... intelligent and well-acted... marks Kittredge as filmmaker with a strong mind and a gift for drawing full-bodied performances from his actors. LA WEEKLY
GRADE: A. The movie keeps the viewer guessing as to what is real and what is in the mind. If you're looking for a gay David Lynch-styled film, this is it. WASHINGTON BLADE --Wolfe
Top Customer Reviews
I've been waiting for this to come out on DVD since I saw it at a film festival in Chicago last year, and I'll be buying several copies -- one for me, and one for all my film-loving friends.
Imagine being sucked into a nightmarish vortex while masturbating. Sex and horror and porn-stars commingle in that ever-changing world where dreams are real, lusty boyish angels are strangled, and every moment, real and imagined, is filmed and archived for the next traveler into this psycho-sexual circular Wonderland, where Alice is oiled and buff and the Hookah-Smoking Caterpillar is behind the camera. That's the feeling you get from Pornography: A Thriller.
David Kittredge -- who many know from his short film "Fairy Tale" from the acclaimed DVD anthology Boys Briefs, or from his second short Target Audience which was nominated for a Teddy award at the 2003 Berlin Film Festival -- delivers a thriller like no other with this feature directorial debut which premiered in April at Cinema Village in NYC.
Set in the gritty and unseemly world of gay porn production, the story focuses on the disappearance of a disaffected and disillusioned "boy-next-door" porn star named Mark Anton. Rumors abound about what happened to Mark, mostly involving his alleged last film requisitioned by a mysterious client. No one has ever seen that film, because, well, Mark is supposedly murdered in it. The following two acts of this three part thriller finds a writer researching Mark Anton's disappearance who stumbles onto a snippet of what appears to be the alleged snuff film (who most in the biz consider to be an urban legend), and another porn-star turned film-maker who channels Mark, feverishly pecks out a script, and proceeds on a ill-fated and haunted production of a porn-bio pic called The Mark Anton Story.
The mention alone of snuff films should lead one to believe this Kittredge movie is somewhat disturbing, but it's not.Read more ›
Journalist Michael (Matthew Montgomery) is researching a book about the cultural significance of Gay adult movies and soon discovers he is being sucked into the odd story of Mark Anton. His lover, William (Walter Delmar), is soon acting weird when the Anton story begins consuming Michael. And they discover their neat new apartment may have been a porn studio. Even THE porn studio where Anton met his fate. After all these years, those involved with Anton aren't happy to find out someone is digging into this old urban legend, and soon Michael finds he has a bigger story on his hands than he thought.
That story also jarringly transitions to Los Angeles, where aging pornstar Matt Stevens(Pete Scherer) decides he will document Anton's dissapearance in his directorial debut., Again, dark forces begin to swirl around. And HIS boyfriend, also played by Delmar, soon tries to warn him away. Since this is allegedly a thriller, nobody listens to any warnings. Bad things are supposed to happen. And they will...or are they?
That is "Pornography's" major flaw. After awhile, the juxtapositions just become to circumstantial, and the thrills just aren't there. Suspense, yes, but not much by way of shockers. What could have been a compelling story flops around into artiness without resolving anything, and if you're going to put the word "Thriller" in your title, you need more than what is in the screen here to make your bones.
This is a dark brooding tale of the porn industry, the people that inhabit, watch and feed off of it. It has a menacing quality that really did have me feeling awkward in a good way through out, like going to a fetish club and feeling over dressed. The story is told in three distinct parts that reference each other. It tells the tale of a porn star from the days of VHS, who made a big splash (sorry awful pun) with his first `video' and then had to suffer the laws of diminishing marginal returns with his follow ups.
His old agent calls him in for a private client 'interview' for a not inconsiderable sum, and he goes along with it after seeking some medieval retribution on his sleazy former agent. He then disappears completely from view. The story is picked up by a writer who is doing a book about the porn industry and what motivates its participants. He gets hooked on what became of our aforementioned hero and then gets drawn into a web of intrigue, snuff movies and misplaced desires. It also features a new 'rising'(oops I did it again)porn star who wants to make a porn film about the same disappeared guy - spooky, and it is.
This is a very atmospheric, moody, and sometimes painful film to watch. The sex that is shown is passion less and functionary and pretty much reflects what you get with porn, although I am no aficionado (but getting there, with determined practice!). It is however, well made, well acted and scarily believable which is why it works. With an 18 cert this is not really for everyone, but it is certainly one for the collection of anyone into serious gay themed films.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love matthew montgomery films but this one was hard for me to follow. I love the idea of the story line but I'm more of the action, romantic, entertainment flims. Read morePublished 2 months ago by ronette
David Kittredge directs this chilling, erotic indie about obsession in the adult film world. Read more
From where I sit, this not a very good film. Really good performances by very capable actors do not fill the gaps this film leaves. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Dennie Sherer
Waste of money and time. Didn't make it past the first 10 mins.Published 6 months ago by Christophe R Kimball
Horrible movie. Very hard to follow, disjointed. Waste of time and rental fee.Published 13 months ago by Robert F Mcfee
"This mind-bending thriller weaves together three stories centering on the mysterious disappearance of boy next door porn star Mark Anton". Read morePublished 22 months ago by Russell S