I was going to write about SLAMMED, but it’s not released until next week (Sept 5) so I’ll wait until people have seen before sharing my notes. Instead, here are some thoughts on the trailer. It went online August 18th and the feedback is split between wild praise (thanks) and thundering chastisements (sorry)
Those in favor say: the men are hot and the sex is awesome.
Those against say: drugs are dangerous and ruin lives.
Obviously, both are right. The sex is hot and drugs are dangerous. What to do? Part of growing up is learning to negotiate life’s complex pleasures. How to do that is up to you, and it’s usually pointless to bitch at others for not making the same choices.
This is why I’m not waging a flame war on the “haters” who say SLAMMED is irresponsible and I should be ashamed of it. I can’t resist reading what they write, even though I never get around to giving a fuck. None of these people have seen the video yet. However, some have made very detailed study of the trailer, and I love that.
For example: one genius at TheSword states that SLAMMED is a video, “in which young men have bareback sex after shooting up crystal meth”. I won’t confirm or deny that, because I hate spoilers. The point is, he makes his (speculative) claim based purely on watching the trailer closely. Very closely, given porn’s supposedly throw-away superficiality.
His post contains an image from the SLAMMED trailer, showing a muscular man holding a hypodermic. He must have gone through frame-by-frame to get this. It’s on-screen for less than one-thirtieth of a second and is barely perceptible at normal speed. Probably I should be angry that he’s making un-substantiated accusations about the guys in SLAMMED, but they’re big lads and not easily offended. Personally, I’m just stoked that someone is intrigued enough by my trailer to forensically dissect it. Maybe because I’m a fan of The Conversation and Blow Up (look them up, youngsters).
Let’s indulge in more trailer analysis.
THE AUDIO: If your wife and kids are in the next room and you’re watching on mute, here’s what you’re missing:
Keiran: “I’m going to do fucked up things with you”
Jon Phelps: “Mm-hm?”
Keiran: “Yeah boy.”
Jon Phelps: “Yeah? … Arrgh … Ohhh fah -”
Unidentified gang-bang guy: “- slammed him –“
(this is the only time the word “slammed” is spoken in the trailer or video)
Various rumbling noises which remind me of the blood rushing in my ears.
Keiran: “Aw, I feel that now.”
Me: “What, the fullness?”
Keiran: “No, the … drugs.”
Clearly this is unscripted. I could never write anything as sexy or funny as Keiran simply being his hot fuckin’ self.
THE VISUAL: 99% of the trailer is intense sweaty fuelled sex between nice-looking genuinely horny men. That accurately reflects the content of the video.
Don’t be fooled by rumours, SLAMMED is not a video guide to getting high. It’s a sex tape. Okay, at 00:17 of the trailer you see Jon chugging something and washing it down with Coke, but it’s not explained and you’re never going to know for sure whether that’s G, a vodka shot, or a nice mineral water. When you see what he does next, you’re not going to care.
The other 1% of the trailer is a montage (00:56) that flies by so fast it’s almost subliminal (vague homage to the boat-ride in Mel Stuart’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) but those few seconds have provoked so much disapproval that I feel like unpacking one of the more obscure references in there: an almost forgotten exploitation movie about a 1930s p’n’p session gone wrong, titled Narcotic (1939).
Within the SLAMMED trailer montage, there are three blink-and-you-miss-them flashes of Narcotic:
1: A young man snorting powder into his nose.
2: An extreme close-up of a hypodermic injecting into an arm (for a moment this is over-laid onto a
group-sex image from SLAMMED so that the barrel of the syringe overlaps with the writhing bodies of three men and the needle appears to inject directly into one of their brains).
3: A text page, difficult to read because it’s over-laid with more male flesh from SLAMMED. It says,
“The weird and revolting behaviour of addicts while under the sinister influence of drugs is authentically presented throughout this picture.”
This moralizing text is a shameless piece of hyperbole, typical of exploitation cinema, which thrived on showing audiences “outrageous” sub-cultural behaviour while simultaneously claiming to disapprove on their behalf. With SLAMMED I have tried to do the former, without the latter. Watch if you want, and make up your own mind.
– Liam Cole