There were so many shorts and full-length features playing at Bent-Con 2013. I wish I could have seen them all, but I had an exhibit table to cover, so I only had a chance to see a handful. The screening rooms were intimate and directors and actors from the films were often present. It was so good to see so many guys dedicated to making gay horror films with no prudishness—the sex was just as intense as the horror! So here’s the breakdown of the films I caught:
Happy Birthday Chad!
Directed by Jason Sharman
This short film (less than 15 minutes) is pure, simple zombie goodness. It’s the story of two-timing Chad, who gets a different eating out than he expected when his boyfriend is away. Set in tight quarters, this one delivers old school chills and thrills, with great camera angles, tension, and gore.
Directed by David Michael Yohe
The Franz Kafka story “The Metamorphosis” has pretty much been “adapted” over and over in horror. The idea of waking up and finding that your skin is changing consistency or slimy appendages are growing out of your body has become a nightmare scenario used to great effect. Hell, it’s like a metaphor for waking up in the morning as a teen and finding a pimple that you think is going to destroy your life.
However, this grisly 15-minute adaptation of Kafka’s story is a distinct metaphor for coming out of the closet and parental rejection. The kid turns into a gnarly bug monster. He crawls into the closet in shame. The dad flips out and rejects the kid as human, while the mom insists the kid is still their son regardless.
Incredibly well done, this one is also quite tragic. However, there were some young people sitting in the small screening room who were actually laughing during certain moments. Why do young people laugh at horror movies these days??? It seems people no longer watch horror films imagining themselves in the position of the character facing the atrocities.
friEnD ADd 5
Directed by Dean Littner
This is actually part 5 of a series of shorts you can watch on YouTube. It also happens to be a prequel to the first four, so after seeing this one, I went back and watched the other four, thanks to director Dean Littner filling me in on their existence. That’s Dean in the sunglasses.
This series of shorts is gory sexual perversion madness! I can’t even describe this one to you—it’s a total trip. A paranormal cult, supernatural sex reassignment, pregnancy (and birth), cannibalism, gay orgies, talking computers, and much more. So many hot naked men to top it all off. Delicious…yet still gory gross. Plus, the ever-handsome adult film star Eduardo appears in one segment.
Definitely check this one out since it’s available to watch on YouTube: friEnD ADd.
The Way To A Man’s Heart
Directed by Steven Vasquez
I watched two films by Steven Vasquez. He was at the screening and he’s one hell of a nice guy. The Way to A Man’s Heart runs about a half hour long, which makes sense because it’s the first in a series of shorts he intends to do that he called a gay erotic Twilight Zone. I hope he moves forward with this project. This low-budget indie is erotic and definitely offers the kind of macabre twist that would make this series a great addition to the growing gay horror genre.
And speaking of young people laughing at horror films, the really weird part of this screening was that the young guys laughing in the audience were the actors from the movie! WTF? I saw one of the perfectly coiffed young pretty boys at Bent-Con the next day and asked him why he was laughing at his movie, and he said it was the first time he saw it with an audience and he was a little self-conscious about being naked on screen. I pointed out that no one in the audience was laughing….
A Siren in the Dark
Directed by Steven Vasquez and Laura Reilly
A Siren in the Dark is the full-length feature by Steven Vasquez, and it’s one total acid flashback! There’s a mega studly psychic cop who is struggling with his sexuality. There’s an interracial stepbrother situation. There’s a missing gay man. There are loads of hot young guys having some majorly explicit sex—the erotic scenes are phenomenal and unapologetic with plenty of full-frontal. Steven said there’s a director’s cut in which he literally cut out some of the sex. I promptly scolded him for that decision after the screening of the expurgated version. There are drugs and death. And there’s a twisting, turning plot that leaves you wondering whodunit, what was done…and what the hell is going on. Nothing is as it seems in this one. In fact, the story quickly shifts completely away from the psychic cop for a majority of the film, but at least we get to see him get naked. Phenomenal. His name is Todd Tetreault, and he looked much more butch in A Siren in the Dark….