It’s a crock to believe a film’s worth a twirl because it has a saucy title. Curiosity may sucker some to drop coin to witness a Tangerine Dream cover band or a Carrot Top memoir reading. But Pornography: A Thriller is a quick come-and-go flick. The limp plot centers on a gay porn snuff tape and a trilogy of vignettes. Once watched the snuff film posthumously unleashes the vengeful spirit of its naïve co-star and ensnares everyone who handles it into an obsidian doom. Neither ticket holder nor projectionist will keep this picture running in theatres for long.
A scheming pimp producer hires out his top box office earner and part-time gigolo, Michael Anton (Jared Grey), for a one-night, $40K payday to some whackjob who likes to torture subjects with machinegun fire Q&A. All the while the room’s rigged with cameras so that every orifice gets its close-up. A few minutes pass before doors shut and nobody but the audience can hear the screams.
Years later, a bargain-hunting gay couple prospect on a Brooklyn loft. The scruffy writer is Michael Castigan, played by Matthew Montgomery—the only standout in this 113-minute jaunt. Castigan’s penning a book about gay pornography and robbing the cradle with his boy-toy partner who works in finance. Once moved in, disturbing clues about the place’s past surface. Unspackled holes in the wall once held camera mounts and, while exploring behind the walls, Castigan discovers a videotape. He conscripts his porn peddling voyeur pal to splice it after the ribbon snaps during a failed attempt to watch the freaky footage. Soon everyone Castigan shows the snuff tape is chased by a leather-faced goon intent on dragging them into his video torture chamber.
Inside the porn studio sweatshop of the San Fernando Valley, an always-a-top, never-a-bottom “movie” star Matt Stevens (Pete Scherer) is possessed to write a new film—The Michael Anton Story. He goes about rehashing the same drivel the audience just endured, word-for-word. A second time around the viewer is forced to toil through this blowhard writer’s process. Watching Stevens type the toothless dialogue on his desktop attempts to subconsciously grant an insider glimpse of the conception of Pornography.
In a sense Pornography: A Thriller is a mix of bad ideas with worse acting, pumping corny sexual deviance. If you’re going to whore out the word porn why not at least have the decency to make the lust last? This never happens here. Just amateur-hour antics, obvious erotic triggers and pathetic pastiche to money shot ends. Porn is all about the setup. Master that and your following, let’s say, will come for more. But without it you’re simply shooting physical aerobics in and out of costumes. While this feature shows plenty of skin-on-skin it’s not a porn—but it’s not a thriller, either. Hard to figure out what it is. One thing for sure is it’s not worth a damn.
Distributor: Triple Fire Productions
Cast: Matthew Montgomery, Pete Scherer, Walter Delmar and Jared Grey
Director/Screenwriter: David Kittredge
Producers: Sean Abley
Running time: 113 min.
Release date: April 16 NY