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Test


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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Set in the free-spirited San Francisco of 1985, Test lovingly portrays this exciting and harrowing era as young Frankie (dancer Scott Marlowe in a breakout acting debut) confronts the challenges of being an understudy in a modern dance company where he s taunted to dance like a man! Frankie embarks on a budding relationship with hunky Todd (Matthew Risch, HBO s Looking ), a veteran dancer in the same company and the bad boy to Frankie s naiveté. As Frankie and Todd s friendship deepens, they navigate a world of risk it s the early years of the epidemic but also a world of hope, humor, visual beauty and musical relief. The captivating dance sequences were especially choreographed for the film by acclaimed U.S. choreographer Sidra Bell. The film s vibrant soundtrack includes work by 80s icons Jimmy Somerville (Bronski Beat), Klaus Nomi, Romeo Void, Laurie Anderson, Martha and the Muffins, Cocteau Twins and Sylvester.

Review

A vibrant period piece with a genuinely likable love story at the center of the action. --Stephen Farber, THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER

Beautiful and captivating. --The Advocate

Beautiful and captivating. --The Advocate

Product Details

  • Actors: Scott Marlowe, Matthew Risch, Kristoffer Cusick, Damon K. Sperber
  • Directors: Chris Mason Johnson
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Surround Sound, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Wolfe Video
  • DVD Release Date: June 17, 2014
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00JESQSY6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,792 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Still, a very successful film.
Average American
Well, I really liked the movie because the story line was very good, I liked the dancing (That was the real surprise) and the acting was very well done.
Bill Jr
In this film, America has the great art is deserves.
John H. Mosley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Robert Chadwick on June 23, 2014
Format: DVD
"Test" is one of those films that are different things to different people. I have seen reviews that lament that there is too little dancing; but from my perspective there could have been less dancing since I was not viewing the film to observe or learn anything more or new about ballet.

"Test" is (for those of us who lived through this era) a nostalgic look at that early time when so little was known about AIDS & HIV ... the mystery of it all ... what was true & what was not true about the things you heard from friends, family & strangers ... the personal questions you asked yourself .... the fear of discrimination & persecution (whether any of it applied to you or not) ... the dilemmas & decisions of daily life.

"Test" takes place during 1985 ... the year the HIV test became available. For people who are too young to remember, "Test" is a history lesson; and for those who once held beliefs or opinions that were not founded in truth, "Test" is a cautionary tale about jumping to conclusions."Test" is not your typical film about the early times of AIDS / HIV. It does not depict the sick & dying. What it is does depict is the uncertainty of who may be sick or dying.

None of the actors in this film are well known; and yet they all do a very credible job. This movie is very believable because it does its job so well. "Test" does not feel cheap, even though the credits include a "thank you" to all contributors to the Kickstarter campaign that made the film possible. "Test" is above all a great tribute to those who had a message to send and, perhaps, memories to explore.

The only mild criticism of the film is for the last few minutes of it which can almost be viewed as an infomercial for safe sex.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on June 12, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
Low budget did not show on this well acted production about dancers and the AIDS epidemic during the early 80s. The main characters were as professional as any and the photography and directing all made this well worth watching. It brought back memories of what was going on during that scary time, when so many kids did not know and were afraid to even get the test. Had I been a little younger and actually good at sex, I may have had a harder time with it. So many kids, especially in San Francisco were living in fear as so little was being done, and people were shunning them because we knew so little. Loosing someone to AIDS just brings this message home and I felt for them then as I do now, although it is no longer a death sentence as it was back in 1985. I think the movie tried not to be too cliche, although it is sometimes hard to accomplish. The Dancing was wonderful, and the music very appropriate to the scenes. I really loved this movie, it moves a little slow but it delivers the message, even the sex was necessary. Highly recommended 5.0 stars 06122014
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Format: DVD
This film was a long time a-coming, especially due to the need to raise funds for its production; that cannot have been an easy matter, for this is both dance and cinema, each of which has its respective expenses to cover. Anyway, the result is a triumph. This is one of Wolfe's videos or films that really works as cinema, not "feeling" like slightly glorified television. "The Test" (Wolfe WOL-5203-D) is an intimate film, to be sure, but it is not cramped and airless in the manner of so much TV.

The choreography (by the illustrious Sidra Bell, if I read the credits aright), which the dancers of the film's small San Francisco modern dance company are seen rehearsing and performing at various times during its preparation and theatrical run, is superb, resulting in a showcase that displays really fine modern dance choreography and dancing at their best. Some of the dancers are better than others, but all function at a satisfyingly professional level or at more than that. The work danced is brief but very absorbing, feeling neither too short nor too extended, eminently well suited to its place in the movie. Most of the dancers are male, and it is they who hold the stage and the viewer's attention for most of the work, but there are some women among them, too.

There are no real costumes, as such, for the cast. (If the location were 21st century Montréal, instead of 1980s San Francisco, the dancers probably would appear nude in such an abstract work.) The lighting suffices for background and foreground, illuminating men with good-looking bodies, some of whom, like the main character, Frankie (Scott Marlowe's role), are exceptionally handsome, Marlowe himself being so in a leanly muscled, lithe, boyish way, having a dancer's ideal physique, if there can be said to be such.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Sierra Skye on June 26, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
The dancing was breathtaking, the actors spot on. . A significant period of time in the bay that I remember all too well. But surrounding this story is the beauty of dance. I've recommended it several times to friends who loved it as well.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John H. Mosley on September 26, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
An excellent portrayal of the early impact of HIV/AIDS on the American dance community. In the mid 1980s in San Francisco, CA -- the setting of this film, the gay lifestyle was condemned and dismissed as a perversion in almost every quarter of American society. A growing and expanding angst among gay men mostly -- a feeling of deep anxiety, dread, foreboding, even terror -- concerning HIV/AIDS is palpable throughout the film, as I believe the screen writers wanted portrayed and the film director accomplished in a masterful piece of direction: not too much but just enough to give the viewer a taste of that angst of the time without sinking into despair. Frankie, the film's central character portrayed by Scott Marlowe (currently associate director of LEVYdance in San Francisco), is a young gay man and an extraordinarily talented and dedicated dancer who only seeks to embrace and express the "joie de vivre" through dance. Had he and so many, many other gay men and women in the arts at that time accepted the reality of the deadly danger stalking them daily in their lifestyle choices, I believe that most would have made safer, healthier, better informed choices in their interpersonal relationships and actions outside the dance.

The dance sequences in this film are absolutely superb, the choreography brilliant! Having spent nine years in classical ballet and modern dance and 38 years total in the performing arts, I can attest to the extraordinarily high level of artistic skill and integrity of Scott Marlowe and the other dancers that abundantly flows from them in this film. Their artistry as dancers-performers is second to none! Bravo! My arts background, training, and professional experience in the performing arts do not cover the theatrical arts.
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