In 1984, British journalist Arthur Stuart investigates the career of 1970s glam superstar Brian Slade, who was heavily influenced in his early years by hard-living and rebellious American singer Curt Wild.
Jonathan Rhys Meyers,
Three intercut stories about outsiders, sex and violence. In "Hero," Richie, at age 7, kills his father and flies away. After the event, a documentary in cheesy lurid colors asks what Richie was like and what led up to the shooting. In the black and white "Horror," a scientist isolates the elixir of human sexuality, drinks it, and becomes a festering, contagious murderer; a female colleague who loves him tries to help, to her peril. In "Homo," a prisoner in Fontenal prison is drawn to an inmate whom he knew some years before, at Baton juvenile institute, and whose humiliations he witnessed. This story is told in dim light, except for the bright flashbacks.Written by
The film received a $25,000 completion grant from the National Endowment of the Arts. This caught the attention of Republican senator Jesse Helms, who in spite of not having seen the film declared it an abomination and a waste of taxpayer money. See more »
Some people felt sorry for him, but most of them wanted to hit him and stuff. It was weird, because he was just the kind of person that you want to see get creamed.
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When first released on video in the US by Fox Lorber, three versions were offered. The director's cut was released as the NC-17 version; an "unrated" version was released which was essentially the same, minus a brief shot of an erect penis sticking out of a man's shorts; and finally an R rated version was sold, one which was cut in several places to placate the MPAA. See more »
Despite this film receiving a lot of negative feed back from a lot of its viewers, I think the film is a truly provocative experience. Granted this film is definitely not everyones cup of tea to say the least, but it operates beyond entertainment. It is not there to be liked or disliked, it is there to be analysed and that is where the enjoyment comes into play.
The film is constructed of 3 stories; the homo, the horror and the hero. Spread out over three different time periods. If any one is thinking The Hours or 21grams think again, its not. This is a much slower paced film and for want of a better word, 'duller' than the two previously mentioned films.
Upon first viewing of the film, it appears that the three characters share no apparent link. However, each story acts as a metaphor for a wider issue, which does connect them all. I wont say what it is, thats your job! Overall poison is a very clever work of art, which belongs to the sub genres of expose and art-house. So if you enjoy those types of films and are interested in queer cinema go watch it! Finally I think Todd Haynes is a genius, a true auteur.
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