Porno (2019)

Porno
Director: Keola Racela
Writer: Matt Black, Laurence Vannicelli
Cast: Evan Daves, Jillian Mueller, Larry Saperstein, Glenn Stott, Katelyn Pearce, Robbie Tann
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 21.9.2019
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Plot:
Abe (Evan Daves), Todd (Larry Saperstein), Chaz (Jillian Mueller) and Ricky (Glenn Stott) are the four teenage employees of the cinema in their small Christian town. They are joined by the projectionist Heavy Metal Jeff (Robbie Tann) to make up the entire crew. So when it’s time to clear out the basement, that’s also their job. To their surprise, the cleaning becomes more interesting when they discover what looks like porn. Little do they suspect that watching it will lead to them summoning a succubus that soon wreaks havoc.

Porno starts off well enough, has some nice jokes and then, when the story should actually get going, it completely falls apart. They could have made more of it.

The film poster showing a drawing of a horned skull surrounded by portraits of the main characters.

Porno has a great idea for a film and starts off with some nice jokes. Then it comes to the film-in-the-film and it’s actually really fantastic there for a hot minute. But after it put everything into place, it doesn’t seem to know what to do with its set-up anymore. No story ever actually develops and the film becomes pretty boring. I actually fell asleep right when things should be heating up so much that I should have been at the edge of my seat. And I can’t say I regret my little nap in the middle of the film. In the end, I still liked the idea, but the battle with the demon just left me absolutely cold.

Plus, the film just relies on tropes a bit too much for its own good, and some of those tropes are actually offensive: the creepy homeless dude, the smurfette syndrome with Chaz being the only female character (apart from the demon) and the “surprise gay dude” – all of these things just don’t work anymore.

Chaz (Jiliian Mueller) and Todd (Larry Saperstein) talking to Heavy Metal Jeff (Robbie Tann).

What does work, though, is Heavy Metal Jeff. He was my highlight of the film – he was entertaining throughout. But he, too, was far from enough to fill an entire film.

That was the general problem here: the film just didn’t have enough material for a feature lenght film. It would have needed more character work or a shorter runtime to be really satisfying.

Abe (Evan Daves), Chaz (Jillian Mueller), and Ricky (Glenn Stott) watching a film together, looking shocked.

Summarizing: despite a good idea, the film falls flat.

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