Misc. TrashWe get emails every now and then with filmmakers requesting reviews. I usually have to turn them down. Not because I’m a heartless prick who hates independent movies, but because new films are not really our focus. However, when I get a review request for a film with a title as blunt as The Gays, it’s hard to say no.


USA, 2014, T. S. Slaughter

I knew I was in trouble when a production company logo for Anal+ (written in Canal+ font) appeared. My fears were confirmed when it was followed by Quivering Rectum Ltd. The Gays opens with Gay family matriarch Bob Gay-Paris (Chris Tanner) proudly watching over his gay baby Alex, “the apple of mommy’s brown eye”. Bob baby-talks the offscreen infant who is surrounding by phallic baby toys. Yep. Alex is going to grow into a successful “poo-pushing pillow biter” with skills in “felching and fisting”. It’s the absurd nightmare vision of child rearing by gays that disturbs the minds of anti-gay marriage warriors.

After this introduction, we meet Alex (Mike Russnak), now an adult and hanging out in a gay bar. He chats to Kevin (Nicholas Wilder) about his super gay upbringing. Alex is the product of the Gays — yes, their last name is Gay. There’s Bob, the masculine mother who we’ve already met, and Rod Gay (Frank Holliday), the archetypal gay dad, and his brother Tommy (Flip Jorgensen). It’s a “fag-eat-fag” world, as says Rod, and the parents have done their best to prepare their sons to be as gay as they can be.

Alex is taught valuable lessons such as how to navigate a bathhouse, forcing himself on men, ruining relationships, and detailed instructions in cruising a seedy public bathroom. He’s punished when he fails to live up to the hardline gay standards of his parents. When he doesn’t take advantage of a male friend sleeping over, Rod and Bob put Alex in a sling and allow him to be butt-fucked by his houseguest sans lube. “Just jam your dick into his quivering rectum,” says an indifferent Rod, “If you tear it up, so be it.”

It’s not all punishments and difficult life lessons. They spend a lovely Christmas together. Brother Tommy receives the thoughtful present of topical cream for anal warts. Sometimes the Gay family even play a friendly match of Eat a Pussy, or Be a Pussy, a confusing board game that involves menstruating rubber vaginas.

It’s revealed that Alex isn’t adopted. Mommy Bob managed to defy the limitations of the male body by physically birthing Alex. It was an anal pregnancy where Alex gestated in Bob’s intestines. We are treated to a rather horrific rectal-birthing scene that parodies The Exorcist.

Scenes like this anal birthing is where The Gays is at its best — unhinged, stupid, and madly spitting in the face of its audience. It’s so outrageous and over the top that it’s impossible to take seriously. There’s a scene where Alex brings home a straight friend, Chris (Matthew Benjamin), who is asked by Alex, “Do you want to fellate my dad?” Chris blows Rod until he pukes. It should be offensive, but it is performed with such unadulterated delight (and with a hysterically fake dick) that it’s impossible not to laugh. And after all, as Alex whines, Chris always makes him watch football when he goes to his house!

As funny as its abrasive satire is, the concept wears pretty thin even at a short running time of just over an hour. It’s perhaps its sketch-like structure that lets it down. The ideas and dialogue becomes repetitive and attention wanes because there’s nothing to latch onto… until something particularly offensive pops up.

Luckily, The Gays is reasonably consistent in its bottom-barrel crudity. I’m not entirely sure how a gay audience would react to this. I’d imagine, like any crowd, it will have its nervous detractors and its belly-laughing supporters. Gay or straight, its unhinged middle finger to political correctness is easy to appreciate.


The Gays is available direct from the filmmakers. You can own it on DVD, or rent it on Vimeo.