Interior. Leather Bar.

Interior. Leather Bar. ★★★½

Ostensibly Mathews and Franco got several mostly unknown actors together to re-create some of the 40 minutes that William Friedkin was forced to cut from the 1980 film Cruising in order to avoid the deadly X-rating. Their idea was that the missing footage consisted of hard-core man-on-man sex (unlikely), or at least men in compromising cruising mode and S&M leather drag which would be too hard for the general public at the time to accept. But what the film delivers is only a couple of short, overtly sexual scenes in the bar (with actor Val Lauren, who played Sal Mineo in Franco's Sal, rather convincingly playing Pacino's role.) The rest of the film is a super-meta documentary about how the (straight and gay) actors, including Franco, felt about playing gay characters so candidly. It's an interesting concept...sort of a filmic bait-and-switch: promising titillation, but going all philosophical about acting method. In any case, it's an intriguing glimpse into the ambiguous intersection of serious filmmaking and gay porn.

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