Customer Reviews: Pornography: A Thriller
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on May 17, 2010
This is a brilliant little independent film that became my -favorite- film the night I saw it. It's like Memento with a heavy dash of David Lynch. If you like intelligent, unpredictable thrillers with a very dark and sexy edge, you'll love this film. The performances are awesome; the directing is excellent; the editing is tight. It doesn't hurt that the cast is easy on the eyes, either.
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.
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on June 19, 2010
[Out IN Jersey Magazine review] -
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. Although in keeping with its looping narrative, a second viewing may be desired; like getting off a rollercoaster and immediately giving it another go. David Kittredge is a film-maker who will be in my cross-hairs from this day forward. You will either love or hate Pornography: A Thriller, for there is no in between. Come what may, dust off the Hookah and enter this intense and mind-bending Wonderland for a viewing experience that you will almost certainly never forget. ~ Taylor Siluwé, author of Dancing With The Devil
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VINE VOICEon November 11, 2010
An interesting, well acted art film that trips over itself too often. "Pornography, A Thriller" is basically three short films that overlap each other in bizarre and David Lynch-ian fashion. You start with the mysterious demise of one Mark Anton, an 80's porn star who disappeared under mysterious circumstances. The rumor is that he got tricked into a snuff movie. That sets up the next two acts.

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.
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on August 10, 2015
David Kittredge directs this chilling, erotic indie about obsession in the adult film world. Over a decade ago, a gay porn star named Mark Anton left the industry, seemingly vanishing into the ether right as his career was picking up steam. Though everyone had a scandalous theory about why he left, no one sought the truth -- until now. When Michael, a young researcher, comes across the story, he decides to investigate, and quickly spirals into a frightening, supernatural fun house of snuff films, voyeurism, and waking nightmares.
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on May 23, 2013
There is too much stuffed into this film for my taste. Three acts that are loosely linked, but it seemed less than the sum of its parts. The initial section - where man falls into porn and his fate is sealed - is predictable. The second scene - many years later - is excellent with two men who have moved into an apartment where murders may have happened. The third scene is about a porn star writing the scripts for the above episodes and it becomes a jumbled mess that overstays its welcome by 30 minutes or so. There were several great spots for the film to end. And it never did.
Still some fine acting, looks great, top score, some pretty bodies, etc.
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This is a very strange but very good independent film starring gay actor Mathew Montgomery (Redwoods). It is not my usual genre that being thriller/horror, but I do like an occasional foray into the unknown (except `chic - lit, some things are best left as mysteries).

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.
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David Kittredge has style - it is a style that inhabits a number of other really fine writers and directors as Christopher Nolan (Memento), David Lynch (Blue Velvet, Twin Peaks, Mulholland Drive etc), Claude Chabrol (Chloe), Alain Resnais (Last Year at Marienbad, etc). Good company, this, and it would seem that given some time to develop his technique and perhaps seek the assistance of some other script doctors he will likely become an important artist in film. In PORNOGRAPHY: A THRILLER he comes close, but it seems like the finished product was rushed to screen before the kinks were ironed out.

There are three interweaving stories in this movie about the male pornography business. It begins with a well-known Los Angeles porn actor Mark Anton (Jared Gray) who is talked into a final film deal where he will make a large amount of money for a one night stand, but the one night stand seems to be a snuff film project with Mark interviewed in the dark by a crazed killer. Jump 14 years ahead to New York City and Michael (Matthew Montgomery) and his partner William (Walter Delmar) move into a large apartment in Brooklyn. Michael is doing research on a book on pornography and in the process receives strange photographs in the mail that lead to the discovery of the presence of evidence that video cameras had at one time been installed in their apartment, videos they come to discover show the 'snuff film' of Mark Anton! The discovery leas to dire consequences. The third story involves porn star Matt Stevens (Peter Scherer) who out of a dream state begins writing then directing and casting a film called 'The Mark Anton Story' in which Matt will play the role of Mark Anton! In the film his partner Jason (Walter Delmar) is a participant in the horror that follows and instead of a film about the death of Mark Anton no one is able to tell where reality stops and thriller starts. It is a classical dilemma for the audience of the conundrum 'What is real'?

The cast is well trained and there are some cameos by Wyatt Fenner and Rasool J'Han that are particularly fine. Give David Kittredge some time and he may become an important figure in cinema! Grady Harp, October 10
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on November 28, 2015
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. I love Mr montgomery and Mr . Steve flims without the trill,sence
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on September 29, 2010
This film is a myth and the object of a cult. Desire among gay people, desire to sexually do absolutely all one may desire, but also desire that everything that someone else might desire to do to one submissive subject may be done. It tries to show that love, any love I guess, gay love here, has that kind of absolute submissive dimension and that this submissive dimension may be exploited to the extreme by some who know there is an audience for that kind of kinky adventure. Is the film well done?

Probably and after a while we lose track of the characters and the places, from New York to California and back again. We seem to be mixing old episodes and recent ones and present ones and maybe future one. We lose track of time and that is important because that kind of desire is so total and absolute that there is no limit to it, no time limit, no space limit, no limit whatsoever. That discourse is interesting because that is the very definition of any passion. What is surprising in this film is that it is interspersed with some sex scenes that are in no way really artistic, nor crude enough to be realistic.

The films seems to prove what is said somewhere that any sex video, even snuff videos are fake, are not true. In other words there the film stops being realistic at all. Because that is not true. And there is a market for that kind of stuff, even for the real thing to be performed, if we can say so, in front of your very eyes. But what's more this sadism that the film seems to push aside is also a real element in many societies.

The death penalty is nothing else and when it is shown on TV or even organized in stadiums like lapidating and hanging, or like some torturing in prisons or during war operations that is webcasted on the Internet, we can be sure that there is a market for that kind of real thing, I mean really real. So the film is interesting in a way when it shows the exploitation of the sex drive among gay people or people in general, but it is fantasizing when it pretends the snuffing side of it does not exist. At least Christopher Rice does not hesitate to set up that sadistic side in full view.

Thanks God he does.

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on May 17, 2010
This is an excellent, enticing and thought-provoking movie that doesn't infantilize and spoon-feed the audience like most of the assembly-line crap that is now coming out of the film industry. This movie gets right at the lizard brain, without apologies, and challenges the viewer--gay or heterosexual, male or female--to look at and tolerate the darker, naked aspects of the human condition. It breaks my heart and frustrates me to no end that that this film will likely not reach as broad an audience and receive the level of attention and acclaim it deserves--as it undoubtedly would if the porn industry depicted were heterosexual--because too many members of our society are still too fearful to explore different realms and find the underlying commonalities.
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