29th Dec2015

In the Heart of the Sea (Film)

by timbaros

Image 20-12-2015 at 19.40Ron Howard and Chris Hemsworth, director and star of 2013’s hit film ‘Rush,’ have teamed up again to bring us a film that can only be described as the epic action adventure film of the year. It’s ‘In the Heart of the Sea.’

‘Rush’ was the true story of two Formula One racing rivals, and the film had lots of pulse racing car races. ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ does it better by telling the real-life maritime disaster that would inspire Herman Melville’s book ‘Moby Dick,’ – the whale that roamed around in the Pacific ocean and caused the deaths of many shipmen. ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ reveals the aftermath of the ship’s crews disastrous meeting with the whale, how they survived at sea for over 100 days, braved storms, starvation, blazing sun and doing the unthinkable, to survive. It’s a movie that could’ve been sunk by any other director, but Howard, who also directed ‘Apollo 13′ and ‘Beautiful Mind,’ superbly directs this film which is based on Nathaniel Philbrick’s best-selling 2000 book ‘In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex.’

The cast and crew make this film a believable tale of a whaling ship called the ‘Essex’ that goes out to sea in search of whales for oil. It’s led by inexperienced captain George Pollard (Benjamin Walker), but First Mate Owen Chase (Hemsworth) is more qualified than him to be in charge of the ship. Cillian Murphy plays Second Mate Matthew Joy. ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ is told not through the eyes of any of these men but it’s told by seaman Tom Nickerson, who was 14-years old when he was on the crew of the Essex. He relays this epic story to novelist Herman Melville (Ben Whishaw) 30 years later. Melville would go on to write a book about the catastrophic event called ‘Moby Dick.’

While ‘Moby Dick’ is a work of fiction, ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ brings to life the true epic journey that begins in 1820 in New England when the whaling ship Essex leaves it’s port to embark on a journey that would find it sailing to the southernmost tip of South America, where it would encounter a whale the size of enormous proportions. It’s a whale that turns on them, and soon enough the hunters become the hunted. And there’s tension between Pollard and Chase; Chase being the more experienced seaman leads the ship’s crew almost every step of the way, however Pollard’s inexperience causes him to make some bad decisions, decisions which endanger the lives of the crew. It’s up to Second Mate Joy to try and smooth the waters between them. And also on the boat is the young 14-year old Nickerson (played by Tom Holland), experiencing his first whaling expedition, and probably the first time out on his own. He’s witness to the catastrophic unfurling events that take place on the boat, not just the life-threatening encounters with the whale, but also being on a lifeboat, with the other men, on the open seas, and surviving to tell the tale. Thirty years later, as the last survivor of the Essex, he’s reluctant to relive the story, but Melville, in the film’s fictional account, get’s Nickerson to tell his story. And what a story it is.

‘In The Heart of the Sea’ is an incredible journey of survival and and the lengths a man is willing to go to save his own life and the lives of others. We are literally transported to another time and place, and for 121 minutes (which fly by), we are taken on a ride that is very convincing and unforgettable. Hemsworth does a fine job as Chase, rugged good looks notwithstanding. Murphy ups the acting stakes as the loyal and determined Second Mate Joy – he’s loyal and has a strong will to live but luck is not on his side. And the whale; it’s a living presence in the film. It’s always lurking in the background, and it looks very real. But credit goes to Howard for allowing us to be swept up into the drama and action as it’s happening. ‘In the Heart of the Sea’ is one of the best films of the year.

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21st Dec2015

The Dazzle (Theatre)

by timbaros

The-Dazzle-at-FOUND111.-Joanna-Vanderham-Milly-David-Dawson-Homer-and-Andrew-Scott-Langley.-Photo-credit-Marc-Brenner-468-600x350A play about two brothers who need each other to coexist is the plot of the new play The Dazzle.

It’s the lead actor and the theatre itself that are the main attractions. Irish actor Andrew Scott is a huge film and television star who was most recently the character ‘C’ in the James Bond film ‘Spectre.’ He’s won awards for his performance in the 2014 film ‘Pride’ and is also known for his television work including playing Jim Moriarty in the hit television show ‘Sherlock,’ as well as for his numerous stage appearances. The theatre, Found111 theatre on Charing Cross, is in the old Foyles bookstore building that was most recently the home to sold out performances of the all volunteer show ‘You Me Bum Bum Train.’

‘The Dazzle’ is performed in one of the building’s upper rooms, which is reached after a dizzying climb of three floors. It’s a room that must’ve been used as book storage for the bookstore, as it seats only 130, so it’s theatre at it’s most intimate, with the stage just inches away from the first row. As for the show itself, it’s based on the true story of two brothers whose bodies were found amid 136 tons of clutter in a crumbling New York City townhouse in the 1940’s. Scott plays Langley Collyer, while David Dawson plays his brother Homer. Langley is a bit of an autistic savant – he’s a piano-playing genius but can’t seem to hold his own in life. He relies, depends and needs Homer to survive. Homer makes sure that Langley is taken care of and reminds him to clean himself. And unfortunately the brothers are on the verge of being broke, so Homer has to urge Langely to perform for money, even though Langley doesn’t want to. Homer, meanwhile, is a non-practicing lawyer who toddles around their cluttered living room with a piano in it’s center. The boys lives get turned around when Milly Ashmore (Joanna Vanderham) visits. She’s a rich heiress who is taken by Langley’s boyish charm and good looks. It’s soon enough that Homer sees an opportunity to marry Langley off to her to ensure their future. But the wedding doesn’t happen and it’s a catalyst that spins the brothers, and Milly’s, lives around, and not for the better.

‘The Dazzle,’ written by American Playwright Richard Greenberg, and directed by Simon Evans, is tricky to pull off because of the very intimate space. The actor’s every move, breathe, facial expression, and mistakes are captured finitely. But at times the actors seem to be overreaching a bit, putting on a show not just for the audience but for themselves as well. It’s all a bit overdramatic in parts where it doesn’t intend to be, and a bit unbelievable as the show plays out. The show does have quite a few witty lines (“we have a blind cleaner who comes in and spits on the furniture” Homer tells Milly when she asks why their apartment is so dirty and cluttered), but it won’t be winning any awards. The wow factor in this show is seeing Andrew Scott, a rising star, very up close and personal, and the theatre itself, which is true pop-up theatre.

The Dazzle is playing until January 30th – to buy tickets, please go here:

http://www.thedazzle.co.uk/buy-tickets/

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20th Dec2015

Sherpa (Film)

by timbaros

image006A very moving story about the men who risk their lives to help others reach the top of Mount Everest is told in the excellent documentary ‘Sherpa.’

Sherpas are an ethnic group from Nepal’s mountainous region, high in the Himalayas. It’s also a surname in a culture that mostly doesn’t assign surnames to it’s people. Sherpas are highly regarded as elite mountaineers and experts in their local areas, and because they live in very high altitudes, they get hired to serve as guides for expeditions in and around the Himalayan mountains, especially expeditions up Mount Everest. Sherpas are tasked with carrying all the necessary expedition equipment up (and down) the mountains. And as for expeditions up Mount Everest, Sherpa’s go up and down the mountain about 30 times. They also have to go through the Khumba Icefall, a dangerous and constantly moving block of ice that is the first hurdle in climbing the mountain. The term Sherpa made it into the cultural lexicon in 1953 when Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first people to reach the summit of Mount Everest, in a year that was the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth. Norgay was referred to then as a Sherpa, and he was awarded the George Cross, while Hillary was Knighted. Norgay gave the name Sherpa a currency which is synonymous with climbing.

In ‘Sherpa,’ filmed in 2014, Director Jennifer Peedom set out to make a documentary from the Sherpas point of view, she wanted to observe up-close, how, and why the relationship between foreign climbers and Sherpas have shifted and soured since the euphoria of 1953, especially after 2013’s ugly brawl when a climber made a derogatory remark to a Sherpa at 21,000 feet, causing a fight between the climbers and the Sherpas. What the filmmakers got instead was to capture the worst tragedy in the history of Everest, and the subsequent days that would change the mountain forever.

The filmmakers embedded themselves with a commercial expedition run by New Zealander Russell Brice’s company Himalayan Experience. Brice had four returning clients after they had failed to reach the summit in 2012, so the pressure was on to get them to the top. There was also a team of 25 Sherpas, managed by Phurba Tashi Sherpa, who Peedom was able to interview before the climb. We see him as he prepares to make history by being the first person to summit Mount Everest 22 times; his wife and mother are also seen voicing their concern about him climbing the mountain they refer to as Chomolungma.

But at 6:45 a.m. on April 18th, 2014, a 14 million kg block of ice crashed down onto the climbing route through the Khumbu Icefall, killing 16 Sherpas. This disaster changes the Sherpas lives, shatters the dreams of the climbers, puts into question future expeditions, and changes the focus of Peedom’s documentary. It was the worst tragedy on Everest. Peedom captures the Sherpas united in grief and anger while everyone rushes to implement a rescue plan. But it turns into a Sherpas versus Westerners showdown as the Westerners want to control the rescue and recovery while the Sherpas want to included in retrieving their own. Peedom captures the tension and the drama, all at Base Camp, at 17,598 feet.

‘Sherpa,’ beautifully directed by Peedom, who directed 2006’s Everest: Beyond the Limit, was ready to tell the story of the relationship between the Sherpas and the foreigners on Everest. After the avalanche she tried to make sense of it all, and captured on film the unfolding situation, and the Nepalese Government’s slow reaction to the tragedy. Peedom follows the story as it unfolds as she and the rest of the crew inadvertently witnessed and documented a historic event. She also beautifully interweaves the back stories of those who risk their lives for the sake of others – the Sherpas. Her crew capture the beauty and the landscape of the region, while at the same time capture moments of disaster and anger and sadness, it’s a compelling and must see documentary. The Best documentary of the year.

On April 25, 2015, there was a massive earthquake in the Nepal region that killed over 9,000 people. It was the worst natural disaster to strike Nepal in 80 years. It triggered an avalanche on Mount Everest that killed 19 people, and aftershocks took place, which further put into question the future of climbing Mount Everest ever again.

Sherpa won the Best Documentary Awards at the London Film Festival. It’s now out in cinemas.

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14th Dec2015

Eden (DVD)

by timbaros

EDEN Photo7If you’re a big fan of garage and dance music, then you’re gonna love ‘Eden,’ a film about one of the pioneer DJ’s of the French underground dance music scene, with a great soundtrack.

‘Eden’ is based on the true-life experiences of Director Mia Hansen-Løve’s brother (and co-writer) Sven, who was one of the pioneering DJ’s of this new wave of music in the 1990’s. It charts the story of Paul (Félix de Givry) who, with a few other friends, forms a DJ collective. ‘Eden’ follows the highs and lows of Paul’s career from 1992 to 2013, including his romances, meetings with high profile DJ’s and singers, and problems with drugs and money.

We meet Paul (and his friends) as teenagers in 1992, at a club, of course. In the background is a sampling remix of Minnie Riperton’s ‘Lovin You’ as part of the infectuous song ‘ A Huge Evergrown Pulsating Brain’ by The Orb. Paul is also smitten with Julia (Greta Gerwig), an American woman living in Paris. Paul knows that she will eventually go back to America, and when she does, he’s devastated. Fast forward to 1995 and Paul and his best friend Arnaud (Vincent Macaigne) have become a DJ duo, playing primarily garage music. It’s music that was first made popular at a gay club in New York called Paradise Garage by DJ legend Larry Levine back in the 1980’s. Paul and Arnaud christian their DJ name as Cheers and they play garage music with a Parisian twist. It’s high energy music, not quite house music; it’s style is euphoric and melancholic, and energetic. Meanwhile, Paul is also getting romantically involved with the diminutive Louise (Pauline Etienne). She’s tiny and cute and perky and is a perfect match for Paul, and she goes with him everywhere. Including, in 2001, when Cheers are invited to play at a huge venue in New York City, where he’s reunited with Julia, who is now pregnant and with another partner. But something about Paul’s meeting with Julia changes something within Louise, and she decides that she needs to lead her own life. Meanwhile, back in Paris, Cheers club looks to be very successful, but somehow Paul never seems to have any money. He borrows from friends, and also from his mother (Arsinée Khanjian), who also suspects that Paul is taking drugs. A couple years on their manager tells them that perhaps they need to change their style to keep up with the times. But will Paul and the rest of the Cheers team manage to do so, and to become at least financially successful and perhaps world reknown?

The soundtrack is the best thing about ‘Eden.’ If you are of a certain age, you will relish in hearing the tunes in this film take you back to your days in the clubs. It’s a soundtrack worth owning. 1993’s instrumental ‘Plastic Dreams’ by Jaydee, the first song played in the film, is a classic dance song. And it sets the music tone for the rest of the film. Club classics such as Frankie Knuckles’ ‘The Whistle Song,’ ‘Finally’ (Original Extended Mix) by Kings of Tomorrow, and the efferable 1991 smash hit ‘Gypsy Woman (She’s Homeless)’ by Crystal Waters, are music highpoints in the film. The film itself, at 131 minutes, is a bit of a stretch in telling Paul’s story. Of course, a lot of the focus is on the music, which it should be, and the entire cast are very good in their roles, all believable in living in the time in which the film takes place. The brother and sister script happens to be a bit thin, and when one of Paul’s friends commits suicide, we don’t really know why. But ‘Eden’ is all about the music. It’s a film that charts the history of garage music from the early 1990’s to 2008, and this it superbly does.



Eden [DVD] (DVD)

Director: Mia Hansen-Løve
Starring: Félix de Givry, Pauline Etienne, Vincent Macaigne
Rating: Suitable for 15 years and over

Félix de Givry stars in this French drama written by Mia Hansen-Løve and her brother Sven Hansen-Løve, on whose life the film is based. Paul (de Givry) is a troubled young man in need of a path and purpose in life. When he travels to Paris and discovers the world of underground music, he realises that he has found his true calling in life and sets about learning how to be a DJ. As he gets sucked into the seedy world that comes with life as a DJ, Paul quickly finds himself hooked on drugs, sex and hard-hitting bass. However, as Paul ages his music ages too and he struggles to keep up with the changing pace of the beats he once knew.
New From: £4.73 GBP In Stock
Used from: £1.30 GBP In Stock

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09th Dec2015

The Gift (Film)

by timbaros

UNTITLED JOEL EDGERTON PROJECTA friend from the past becomes a bit of a nuisance in the new horror film ‘The Gift.’

It’s gifts that one couple don’t want, or need. Young married couple Simon (Jason Bateman), a sales executive at a computer security firm, and his interior designer wife Robyn (Rebecca Hall), have just relocated from Chicago back to Simon’s hometown of Los Angeles for his new job. They have moved into a beautiful home, with floor to ceiling glass windows that look out onto the front yard. It’s a dream home any couple would want. One day while out shopping, a man starts looking at and following them. It turns out that this man, Gordon (Joel Edgerton), was an old school friend of Simon’s. They exchange numbers and agree to meet up. A dinner is arranged, but it turns out to be awkward as Simon doesn’t really remember Gordon from his school days, but Gordon seems to think him and Simon were friends back then. After the initial dinner, Simon and Robyn start finding gifts on their doorstep. First it’s a bottle of wine, and then it’s a school of goldfish in a newly-made pond that Gordon has created in their front yard. Then soon enough Gordon starts showing up at their house unannounced. But it becomes a bit too much for the couple, and they decide to invite themselves over for dinner at Gordon’s house to check him out. What they discover, or at least what it appears to be, is that Gordon is a successful businessman with a huge house whose wife has just left him which may or may not explain his odd behaviour. But Simon is still a little bit suspect about him, and he remembers that back in school Gordon was known as ‘Gordo the Weirdo,’ and in his mind nothing much has changed about him. As Gordon continues to stalk the couple, even after they call the police on him, it’s a matter of time before they start fighting for their survival, not just from Gordon but survival for their marriage as well, especially when Robyn learns the truth of what happened between Simon and Gordon all those years ago.

Edgerton (Black Mass) has given himself a plum role (he wrote and directed the film as well) as a man with a fatal attraction for the couple. It’s a creepy role, and Edgerton really ramps it up when he needs to. And Bateman and Hall are perfect in their roles as a fresh and doe-eyed couple who are trying to start a family and settle into their new lives. While the film doesn’t quite maintain the thrill and mystery that it starts out with, culminating in a silly finale, it’s a chilly and scary story that’s one hell of a ride.

The Gift is out now on Digital HD and Blu-ray and DVD

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08th Dec2015

Tinderella: Cinders Slips it In (Theatre)

by timbaros

CVNt_JqWEAI7IREAbove the Stag theatre has done it again and produced another hilarious panto in ‘Tinderella: Cinders Slips it In.’

The theatre has produced many a camp panto in years past. These include ‘Dick Whittington: Another Dick in City Hall’ in 2009, ‘Sleeping Beauty: One Little Prick’ in 2011, and last year’s ‘Treasure Island: The Curse of the Pearl Necklace.’ But with ‘Tinderella: Cinders Slips it In’ the Stag has outcamped, and outdone, all it’s previous pantos. It’s as camp as christmas and as gay as eggnog. And it’s hilarious.

The title says it all. The show is a take off on Cinderella, and in the Stag’s version Prince Charming is searching the kingdom for a man (and NOT a woman) who fits into the glass slipper, in the kingdom of Slutvia. And that man is Cinders. He cooks and cleans and does the chores for his wicked evil stepmother Countess Volga and her two vile daughters Nicole Ferrari and Maude Escort. But then one day, while on a gay app on his mobile phone, he meets Prince Charming, and it is love at first sight for both of them. But Cinders’ phone gets ruined (I won’t say how!), and he’s unable to contact, or be contacted by, the very handsome young Prince. But there is a Fairy Godmother, in the form of The Fairy, and she’s the one who, with the help of the adorable Buttons, makes sure that Cinders gets to the ball to be reunited with Prince Charming, though the Prince’s father, King Ludwig, has no clue that his son is jonesing for another man. It’s all a laugh a minute when the show takes us from the Countesses kitchen to the King’s office to a courgette that gets turned into, funny enough, a mode of transport to which Cinders to the palace! We also are treated to songs about balls, a clever slow-motion scene that involves the entire cast, and enough campiness and cute boys to make even Alan Carr blush. And to top it off, we are spoiled with Slutvia’s Eurovision song!

CVYOHJoWUAA-160

What can one say about a show that has ok acting, ok singing, and an ok script? Well – it’s brilliant! You’ll be laughing from the opening scenes which include a giant rat, to the audience participation bits (there are quite a few and boy are they clever!), up to the final heartwarming and groin inflaming scenes. It’s a show that’s over two hours but it flies by. And the cast are perfect, from Joseph Lycett-Barnes as Prince Charming to Lucas Meredith as Buttons and Grant Cartwright as Cinders – everyone does their part, and they all act very well with each other! From the writers and director of total sell-out hits ‘Get Aladdin,’ ‘Jack Off the Beanstalk,’ and ‘Treasure Island – The Curse of the Pearl Necklace’ (Martin Hooper and Jon Bradfield) and directed by Andrew Beckett, Above the Stag has put on another memorable show.

Tinderella: Cinders Slips it In is playing until January 16th. Most performances are sold out but there are a few tickets left on various dates. To book, please go here:

http://www.abovethestag.com/shows/

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07th Dec2015

The Blues Brothers Christmas Special (Theatre)

by timbaros

Blues Brothers Arts TheatreThe blues are back in town in the form of ‘The Blues Brothers Christmas Special’ at the Arts Theatre in Covent Garden.

It’s a night of rowdy and eclectic music as David Christopher-Brown and Joshua Mumby star as The Blue Brothers. Brown is electric and all over the stage as ‘Joliet’ Jake Blues – he’s practically a dead ringer for a role that was made famous by the late and great John Belushi, and he nails it when he sings the Randy Newman-penned ‘Guilty.’ But he’s really on fire when dressed as a bee for ‘I’m a King Bee.’ Mumby’s time to shine, in the role of Dan Aykroyd, is when he sings the tune ‘Rubber Biscuit.’ It’s a mesmerizing tune done with skill needed to sing a relentless strings of words with a deep voice in one big mush up, and Mumby does it brilliantly. Google the song on You Tube and you will see how hard it is to pull off. And together, as The Blue Brothers, Brown and Mumby plow their way through classic songs such as ‘Gimme Some Lovin,’ ‘Jailhouse Rock,’ and the song The Blues Brothers are most identified with – ‘Soul Man.’

But it’s not just The Blues Brothers who are part of the show. We are treated to the energetic Simon Ray-Harvey in his triplet role as Ray Charles, James Brown and Cab Colloway, singing ‘Minnie the Moocher.’ His performances are nicely intertwined with The Brothers performances. If that was not enough, T’Shan Williams brings the requisite female vocals in her dual roles as part of the backing up Stax Sisters (which also includes Hannah Kee and Sasi Strallen) and in her solo performance as Aretha Franklin singing ‘Respect.’ She’s got the lungs and the voice to overpower everyone in show, including her fellow Sisters, who can’t quite match her in the singing department but are able enough.

The Blues Brothers Show was created back in 2009 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, with Brown and Mumby as it’s leads since then. It’s a show that has been approved by Judy Belushi (John’s wife) and Dan Aykroyd, and according to the press notes, none of the productions are the same as the previous ones. New songs, choreography, direction, and design are constantly changed with each production to keep the spirit alive and fresh. In this reincarnation, directed by Mumby, it’s a show full of energy and music. And without an interval, we are treated to 90 minutes of songs that doesn’t for a moment get dull. There’s so much energy on stage in these 90 minutes that it might leave you exhausted by the end. The show doesn’t have a story to tell, just like similar successful jukebox musicals (Let it Be, Sunny Afternoon and We Will Rock You), but it’s success lies in the musical performances of the leads in recreating the sounds and look of the singers they are performing as. It’s a show that, while it won’t be winning any prizes, will lift your spirits up and get you dancing in the aisles, at the insistence of The Brothers themselves.

To book tickets for The Blues Brothers Christmas Special, which is playing until Sunday, January 10th, please click here:
https://artstheatrewestend.co.uk

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05th Dec2015

Chemsex (Film)

by timbaros

QuadA hard-hitting and eye-opening look at gay men and their sexual lifestyles is on full display in the new documentary ‘Chemsex.’

It’s not all gay men, but, as the documentary tells us, it’s but a few who go on drug binges, coupled with lots of unsafe sex, that last all weekend. And it’s these men who are more than likely to become infected with HIV.

We meet several of these men. One of the first is Dick, who is not shy to tell us about his sexual exploits, while on drugs, and freely admits that he’s just taken drugs before the camera crew arrives (a couple of the guys interviewed admit to this). We also meet clean cut Simon, a well-educated man who happens to be a geneticist. He’s had a hard time beating the temptation to take part in drugs and unsafe sex. He also admits that he’s HIV+, but he’s also a denialist who doesn’t believe that he’s got it. We then meet Enrique, a 30-something good looking Spanish man who says he was a commercial banker for 10 years but lost everything because of his chemicals habit. After losing pretty much everything, including his job, he resorted to prostitution to make money. More importantly, we meet David Stuart, Substance Use Lead, GUM/HIV Manager at Soho’s 56 Dean Street Clinic. We see his discussions with Simon, who he tells to try to go a week, and two weeks, then another without taking drugs. Stuart is the voice of reason in ‘Chemsex.’ He’s there as an advisor, and also as a friend, to many of his patients. Stuart bluntly says in the film that him and a friend used to regularly do cocaine while he was hooked up to a IV drip while he was close to death with an HIV illness many years ago. No doubt his experience with both HIV and drugs enables him to relate to his patients at the clinic. And his program at the Clinic is one of it’s kind and is being used as a model for clinics in the country.

It’s a disturbing documentary. Not only after hearing about these men’s behaviour but also to digest the fact that there are organized private parties for men who want to combine unsafe sex and various types of drugs. We meet one party organizer who opens up his home to the cameras, and we see the men who are there, engaging in unsafe sex all around the house, with most of them openly taking drugs, mostly provided by the host.

Of the estimated 107,800 people living in the UK with HIV, 24% are undiagnosed and possibly spreading the virus. And men who have sex with men have the highest risk of infection in the UK and, in 2013, they accounted for 54% of new diagnoses. One in 11 gay men in London is living with HIV. And a record high of 3,360 gay men were diagnosed with HIV in 2014. It’s statistics like these that make you wonder why gay men partake in drugs and unsafe safe, with Chemsex being the term for this. Directors William Fairman and Max Gogarty spectacularly highlight this epidemic in the gay community in a very powerful and potent film about the underworld of modern gay life with it’s easy access to sex using mobile apps and the internet, and drugs.

Statistics in a chemsex study from 2014 by 56 Dean Street Clinic showed that 3,000 gay men accessing the clinic each month are using recreational drugs, though not necessarily wishing to address their drug use. 100 new gay men access specific ChemSex support each month; 70% of these reported no ‘chem-free’ sex in previous six months while 98% had never accessed statutory drug use support.

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