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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.

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Saturday, May 14, 2011

entry arrow11:56 PM | Turn Around

Dominic Leclerc's Protect Me From What I Want [2009] is simply told, done in broad strokes that make no attempt at depth other than what is cursorily given, and yet despite that, it is an effective small film. Saleem, a young Pakistani boy, cruises -- despite great personal misgivings and overriding guilt -- the streets of a British city, and catches the eye of Daz. He is given Daz's number after an aborted attempt at street seduction -- and then we segue to a kind of Pygmalion scene: Daz breaking through the barriers, and finally being able to give Saleem the titular thing he wants, but is scared of. The seduction is punctuated by editing that's more disruptive than artistic, giving the sequence a rushed embarrassed feel that betrays the efforts of its actors to stay true to their characters (and what we do get here is some fine acting). It all ends with an emotive plea from one character to another, which gives us ... what, hope? I'm not sure, but I smiled when it ended, and I felt my heart fuller than usual. But what does it all mean? Is this just an exercise in overly rushed erotica? A statement film on culture and deeply-inculcated homophobia? Is this a haphazardly done My Lair Lady a la Skins? The film does not exactly say anything new, but I liked it. That's my own life up there on the screen, all told in 13:32 minutes, so I appreciate its reach via the biographical, the reader-response way. But that's just me.

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