Last night, I had the absolute pleasure of attending the premiere of Public Eye, directed by my dear friend Davo Hardy.
Davo has a number of films under his belt, in which he also stars. Complex, The Lives We Lead, and A Silent Agreement are some of my fave Hardy films (you can purchase DVDs right here in my shop).
What sets Hardy’s films apart from others (in my humble opinion, that is), is his ability to touch on sensitive issues that we as a society don’t talk about. Things we should be talking about. In Complex, we learn about nudism and non-sexual nudity. In The Lives We Lead, we see a woman rape a man, and how unfair he’s treated because he’s a man, not a woman. And in A Silent Agreement, he covers ableism and navigating the world with a disability.
Before I go further, I will warn that Public Eye is rated R18+ and contains adult sexual themes, attempted rape, and on-screen boners 🍆 Viewer discretion advised
Public Eye follows the story of Elliot Sinclair (played by Hardy), who is a children’s TV show host. At the start, we see he’s married and has a 16 year old son. Elliot is shortlisted to act in a film which involves a front-on nude scene, and he is keen to act in the serious acting role.
Elliot comes under fire from his family who strongly advise him against it. They point out the damage a nude scene can do to his career if he’s not careful. This leads him to having a private moment of masturbation while he’s watching porn, and accidentally broadcasts his own jerk-off vid.
When he realises it’s recording, he says ‘fuck it’ and finishes his job at hand. For just a moment, he wants to see what it’s like to be sexual on screen.
What follows is Elliot’s life being turned upside down as a result of the video going viral and being shared to countless online platforms. To make things worse, the TV network gets wind of it, and Elliot is labeled a perve and even a pedophile.
Here is the trailer:
This film is very relevant to today’s cancel culture, and how SJWs (social justice warriors) can gang up on and dox people who don’t agree with their views. There is so much I want to discuss about this film but i don’t want to drop any spoilers.
Quite often on Facebook and Twitter, I see ‘phobes of every type ganging up on queer author’s posts and spewing their hatred and disgust that the author dares to write such content. I’ve personally been told I’m disgusting and need to read the bible on one of my Facebook ads. It’s disheartening to say the least.
Lately, I’ve been seeing something else. When one of our people is attacked in such a way, instead of lashing back, a bunch of us will go to that post and fill it with positivity, effectively drowning out the troll’s voice. I was surprised to see this happening in Elliot’s story.
Out of all of Hardy’s films, I have to say that this one resonated with me the most, and it’s my new fave.
The final thing I wanted to comment on was the humor. This film is sprinkled with puns and jokes related to jerkin’ the gherkin, and it had me in stitches in times. The most amusing thing to me was that Davo, a proud gay man, played his role as a cis married man so damn well – I even believed the on-screen chemistry between him and his stage wife. Knowing Davo so well, I did laugh when Elliot was having a wank to straight porn, and still managed to hold his boner on screen. Now THAT is great acting!
I rate this film 5 stars, not because he’s my friend, but because this is an amazing film that captures today’s issues with the internet and weaves a compelling tale with an unlikely villain.
For the month of January, Public Eye will be showing every Friday night, 7pm, at Chauvel Cinema in Paddington, Sydney. Easily accessible on Public transport via the 333 bus from Circular Quay.
The DVDs will be available in my store once they become available.
Also, catch Davo and I at our Fair Day stall in Feb 2022! More on this to come.