Program 19 – Retake
USA / 2016 / 98 min. | Directed by: Nick Corporon
A handsome middle-aged businessman patrols the streets of San Francisco looking for the perfect rent boy. Jonathan isn’t looking for the hottest or sexiest guy, rather he’s got a very specific type in mind. Back in his hotel room, he dresses them in a brown wig and douses them in a particular cologne. Exacting and ill-tempered, he auditions one and then another until he finds the perfect fit. Once he’s found what he’s looking for, he offers the chosen hustler a handsome salary to accompany him on a road trip to the Grand Canyon. No questions, no back-story; just dress and act as instructed and collect your cash.
In the tradition of so many great American road trip films, our mismatched duo hits the road. They stay at cheap motels, drink at local dives, and pose for pictures at roadside landmarks. But even as they begin to bond with each other and enjoy the company of a colorful couple traveling the same route, a pervasive sense of mystery continues to cast a shadow over the trip. Each time one of the many questions that surround Jonathan and his travel companion is answered, it only seems to open new and deeper questions.
Retake is a road trip film unlike any that you’ve seen before. The two central characters are damaged and imperfect, but sympathetic, earnest, and steeped in raw emotion. Intriguing and provocative, this film will take you on a journey that rivals the one on the screen.
— Stephen Weisenreder
Jury Award: BEST MEN’S FEATURE North Carolina Gay & Lesbian Film Festival Official Selection: Frameline San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival Official Selection: Honolulu Rainbow Film Festival Official Selection: OPENING NIGHT SELECTION Dayton LGBT Film Festival Official Selection: Outfest Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival Official Selection: Austin Gay & Lesbian International Film Festival