The Fluffer (2001)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5

USA, 2001.  Screenplay by Wash Westmoreland.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by , .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Podcast:  Bad Gay Movies.

Sean (), recently moved to Los Angeles to pursue his dream of being a cinematographer in Hollywood, finds himself obsessed with a gay porn star named Johnny Rebel () when he accidentally rents a movie called Citizen Cum in place of the Orson Welles classic. He applies for a job at the studio where Rebel works, getting a gig as cameraman but, through contact with the object of his affection, ends up being his fluffer (this is the person who orally helps out men in adult films when they can’t…um…stiffen their resolve). At first he thinks that being this close to such a fantasy man is a dream come true, but in getting to know Johnny and in having such an impersonal sexual relationship with him, Sean finds himself getting lonelier and more disaffected as time progresses. It also doesn’t help that Johnny Rebel is really straight and lives with his stripper girlfriend (). It’s a pretty honest look into the gay porn industry, especially considering co-director Wash West researched the film by making adult films for a few years (even winning awards for them), thus lending it a huge air of credibility (the film also uses countless cameos from real adult film stars and directors including the fabulous ). No matter how much more believable than Boogie Nights it is, though, it’s never more than mildly boring. The two main characters are hardly sympathetic, and even when the story tries to throw in a bit of a caper in its last fifteen minutes it can’t manage to muster up any useful energy. As is often the case with this genre, the most endearing characters in a comedy-drama aimed at gay men are women (Day, and  as a studio employee), plus it has an excellent cameo by , who really should do more movies.

Toronto International Film Festival:  2001

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