Pat Rocco Dared
Playing soon at Mix Festival Mexico City
Whistler Film Festival
“This entertaining and enlightening documentary sheds a light on a pioneering moment in film history and the gay rights movement, as it revisits the break-through 1960s gay films of Pat Rocco. Rocco was responsible for the very first gay films that were shown openly to the paying public in the late 1960s. Situated before hardcore porn became the norm, and in marked contrast to the somewhat darker gay porn that was coming out of New York at the time. Pat Rocco’s film were more sun-dappled, featuring tanned and happy-looking naked men on sail boats and on beaches, celebrating their identities and the beauty of the male body. But all these dangling participles on film served a political purpose. Police were still raiding bath-houses in Toronto at that time, and Pat Rocco’s celebrations of the male form were revolutionary in their day. In fact, one of his late 60s films, A VERY SPECIAL FRIEND may well have featured the first on-screen all-male kiss in the history of movies. One particular stunt illustrates the political agit-prop nature of his work. In one jaw-dropping sequence that predates the opening of LA LA LAND by sixty years, a nude man dances up the middle of the Hollywood Freeway in rush hour traffic, naked and joyful as the day he was born, the whole un-permitted sequence caught on camera from an overpass. The filmmakers got to talk to the generous, rather humble and open-minded Rocco just before his death. It took a team of dedicated Canadian filmmakers to capture a fairly obscure moment of indie film history that deserves to be remembered.”
“Those who have become jaded about such events would do well to see this film…[Prides in Eastern Europe] evoke violent reactions that are truly terrifying.” – Matthew Hays, The Mirror
Vancouver’s Gay Pride Director examines the role and relevance of Pride Celebrations around the world – from the extremes of protest to the heights of celebration.
Run Time:1 hour 25 minutes