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Thursday, July 24, 2014

DVD Review: Eroddity(s)

Eroddity(s) is an anthology of gay-themed short films written and directed by Steven Vasquez. It opens with a fake dictionary entry for the word eroddity, and there are already a few problems. It is identified as a noun, but the first definition is “of, tending to arouse sexual desire.” That’s the definition of an adjective, not a noun. And then the third definition is “(s) plural, consisting of, containing more then one.” I’m sure the filmmaker meant “more than one,” and I have to wonder why no one proofread the opening of the film. Also, that definition doesn’t really apply. Basically, he’s defining the word plural there, not the word errodity (or erroditys – and wouldn’t it be errodities anyway?) Not an auspicious beginning.

The first story, “Forever Mine,” opens with a gay couple watching a porn. “I put in your favorite movie for you,” one of them says, and it’s said without humor. “Let’s just get this over with,” the second guy says, leaning in to kiss the first. The film then goes back to an earlier moment in their relationship, with the two walking through a park, and one of them peeing. Then they’re back in bed, and the peeing one says, “You’re all I have.” He repeats it, and then the camera pans over to reveal that the other guy is now a skeleton. We go back to the peeing shot because certainly that’s a shot worth showing twice. And since they’re showing it a second time, let me mention this: The guy has pulled his pants halfway down his thighs. Does any guy do that to pee? The non-peeing guy then says, “Dude, I’m your brother.” Dramatic music plays, and we’re back in their house and the peeing guy pulls a gun out of a drawer and shoots the other one. And that’s that. It’s kind of hilarious, in an unintended and sad way.

The dead one then addresses the camera directly: “I have a bone to pick with my little brother.” This is the first line that seems intended to be funny, but of course is not. He continues: “Hi, I’m Corey Tyndall. And welcome to Eroddity(s).” In voice over, he continues: “You have entered a realm where teenage boys make new discoveries behind locked bedroom doors. We take you behind these doors and offer you a voyeuristic window into the world of the young and the inexperienced.” And for those who are curious, yes, there is a lot of male nudity in the film. The film is just this side of porn, but the performances and the music aren’t quite up to that level.

When the next story, “A Mind Of Their Own,” begins, it has its own opening credits sequence, which seems unnecessary. Aaron is an annoying guy who narrates this story. “I decided to do a little investigation,” he says as we see him doing a little investigation on screen. Note to filmmakers: Don’t have a narrator tell us what we’re already seeing. He finds a cassette tape and a note. So he goes to Orange County and meets some other guy who can’t act. It’s painful listening to them talk, partly because this is the worst dialogue in the history of film (and yes, I’m including porn) and partly because these two have no acting talent whatsoever. We then have a flashback to Aaron with a girl who has slightly less talent than the others. Shocking. Anyway, there is some silliness about a magic tape recorder that creates male lovers. The truly magical thing here is that someone was able to find a tape recorder.

Clearly, writer/director Steven Vasquez loves to see his own name on screen, because at the beginning of the next story, “Unsolved Christmas,” he has once again given himself writing and directing credits. Since he wrote and directed the entire film, it seems one credit at the beginning would have sufficed. Anyway, this one too features narration, and the narration is done as a Christmas poem. Zach’s parents overhear a phone conversation, thus learning of his sexual orientation. They want to make him straight, and so they buy him a camera. There are actually some really cute moments when the narrator makes suggestions for use of the camera. And of course he uses the camera to photograph a boy he has a crush on.

“The Way To A Man’s Heart” (and hey, look, more credits for Steven Vasquez!) opens with a guy going to another guy’s grave, saying he’s sorry and that he misses him. At a bar, he then meets Kevin, and the two talk about how Thomas died a year ago. At home, the guy’s girlfriend shows up with a bottle of wine to celebrate the anniversary. The guy asks, “Is it really something we should be celebrating?” And the girl says, “Us being together for a year and a half.” Okay, someone needs to tell this girl the definition of anniversary. Apparently they buried Thomas in a cardboard box in someone else’s grave, as we learn through some dialogue in between sex scenes. Thomas returns from his grave (well, someone else’s grave) to seek revenge, his plan including a lot of cooking.

At the end of the film, the host threatens us, “Until next time.” No!

Eroddity(s) was written and directed by Steven Vasquez (I figured he’d want me to mention that one more time), and was released on DVD on July 15, 2014 through TLA Releasing. The DVD includes the film’s trailer.

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