›› Triple Crossed
a film by Sean Paul Lockhart.
2013 | 99 mins | US.
principal players: Jack Brockett / Chris, Sean Paul Lockhart / Andrew, Laura Reilly / Jackie Townsend, Addison Graham / Tyler Townsend, Tellier Killaby / Kendra, Steven Tylor O'Connor / Dealer, Jill Zimmer / Bar Waitress, Jude Lanston / MP Officer, Matt Campbell / Tanner, Ryan Massey / Derek and Chad Siwik as Himself.
Adapted Synopsis: "With a tour in Afghanistan behind him, war-torn Chris Jensen struggles to assimilate back to the reality of life in California. Living out of his car, he soon discovers that few are willing to employ the services of a damaged military man. That is, until he finds himself hired by the ever duplicitous Jackie; a girl on a mission to see her late half brother's boyfriend dead by means more foul than fair, on account of the ever lovable Andrew set to inherit a multi-million dollar share of the family business. Only with Chris getting more than up close and personal with his prey, the question beckons - whose side is he truly on?"
Filled with some passionate scenes of man-on-man lip-service and more, backed by the vibrant music of Chad Siwik and filmed, in part, in the lush location of Topanga Canyon, California, this feature frankly ticks many of the requisite boxes on the "festival favourites" checklist.
Yet what makes this work of particular note, is not that it highlights the post traumatic stress disorder suffered by many a soldier exposed to the ravages of war, as commendable as that is. Nor that it arrives with the splendid cinematography of Steven Vasquez of Sideline Secrets credit. Rather that it cinematically marks the directorial debut of Sean Paul Lockhart; perhaps better known to the gay world as Brent Corrigan of adult hardcore fame.
Getting up close and personal with his prey in Triple Crossed.
Yet here he stands before and behind the camera to deliver a film far removed from the genre that made his pseudonym. The result is a feature that lacks the menace of a good thriller; the narrative opting to hint of dark deeds, rather than go for the bloody jugular, that is until its gun toting styled ending. That said, what it lacks in bite, is more than compensated for by way of romance, with SPL pitch-perfect in his "boy next door" persona; that of a young man recovering from the loss of his soldier lover in the tattoo inscribed arms of Jack Brockett, here making his screen debut as the "to be or not to be" assassin of the piece and doing a pretty good job of it, too.
To kill or not to kill, that is the question in Triple Crossed.
That their emotional bond forms the reverberating heartbeat of the film, goes without saying. As too does the fact that and as with many a first time feature, a number of negatives can be found in the mix and personally I found the close of play (is that a dead body I see before me?) lacking a certain amount of credibility. But that said, this is solid gay to the core filmmaking that all associated with should be rightly proud of; that of a sensuous tale of gay love served with a twist. Bottom line; there's a lot to like here, high as it is on production values, overflowing with same-sex pride and without a stereotype in sight. And for those doubting the directorial prowess of Sean Paul Lockhart, then I have to say that as a director he shows far more knowledge of the medium, than what some may have given him credit for. The boy has done good and I for one wish him every success in his newfound cinematic direction.
Gay Visibility - overt.
Nudity - the full monty.
Overall - file under ... 3+ stars.