The young, naive Smitty is sent to prison for six months; Cathy, his girlfriend, watches as he disappears behind the bars and barbed wire. He's assigned a cell with Queenie, a balls-out ...
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Based on a semi-autobiographical novel by Robert T. Westbrook, the movie is about 23 year old Columbia University dropout (Stanley Sweetheart) who seeks his identity during the sexual ... See full summary »
In the 1930's, Max Brown is an urban young man from an Eastern province, fresh from college, whose only job offer is in a one-room school house in the Canadian prairie. At first he's ... See full summary »
Lonely teenager Marc is secretly in love with Olaf, the cool boy-next-door. He dreams about a relationship with him, and when the two go camping, this dream seems to become reality for Marc... See full summary »
The young, naive Smitty is sent to prison for six months; Cathy, his girlfriend, watches as he disappears behind the bars and barbed wire. He's assigned a cell with Queenie, a balls-out drag queen, Rocky, a quiet but cocky con, and Mona, a young gay man who ministers to Rocky. Smitty watches in horror as gangs of inmates brutalize prisoners who lack protection. Those who complain risk beatings or murder at the hands of unsympathetic guards: all cries are bootless. Mona offers poetry - Shakespeare's sonnet XXIX; Queenie and Rocky offer Smitty advice, and Rocky offers protection for a price. Smitty's choices and their consequences are the film's main subjects.Written by
Sal Mineo directed the 1969 Los Angeles production "Fortune and Men's Eyes and played the role of Rocky, a prison bully, who rapes a naive young prisoner, Smitty (played by Don Johnson in the L.A. production). Mineo's staging emphasized violence and sexuality. He added a scene to the play, staging Rocky's rape of Smitty in the prison shower, an event that had been kept off stage in earlier productions. The Los Angeles production, which was eventually moved to New York (without Mineo as an actor) featured full frontal nudity. Mineo also directed a subsequent San Francisco production. Although playwright John Herbert did not initially object to Mineo's alterations, he vociferously criticized Mineo's Los Angeles and New York stagings. (Being a convicted felon, the Canadian Herbert was unable to enter the U.S. to actually see the productions.) Herbert refused to sell him the film rights to his play, and the estrangement obviated any chance of Mineo being involved in the 1971 movie version of the play. See more »
Although a lot of prison films allude to homosexuality very few actually take it as the main theme. Jean Genet's "Un Chant D'Amour" isn't just the best of them but arguably the most poetic gay movie ever made. You certainly couldn't say the same for Harvey Hart's film of John Herbert's play. I've never seen it on stage but if it was anything like this I'm glad I didn't . This is an appallingly caricatured account of men 'forced' together by circumstance with the emphasis very clearly on sex. If it were better acted it might have been tolerable but the largely unknown cast can do nothing with the mediocre material. In 1971 this might have seemed 'daring'; now it just seems crude and tasteless.
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