a short film by Michaline Babich
2007 | 14 mins | US
›› Solace - aka: King of Swords
a cautionary tale on the perils of online dating.
Solace by Michaline Babich Some of the best gay shorts can at times catch you unaware, having far more going on than what may at first appear, as this emotional work is indicative of.

It tells the story of Hugo, a young man on the look out for love on a hot L.A. night. Surfing the online chatrooms, he is soon to hook-up with Brett; an older gay man living in Beverly Hills. Arriving at his luxurious pad, Hugo is greeted with a bowl of speciality ice cream, given the viewer minutes earlier witnessed Brett ominously mixing ice cream with an assortment of pills. Knowing that something just isnít right, we watch as the two men take to the outdoor hot tub and a dip in which Hugo is set to get more than he bargained for. Or is he?

Well-executed throughout and backed by a small but fine cast, this thoughtful piece is in effect a cautionary tale on the perils of online dating, thanks to a telling script from director Michaline Babich and producer Richard Courtney, who here doubles as Mr Beverly Hills. Yet is it the eye-candy turn from Joey Tuccio as Hugo that draws your attention, perfectly capturing the emotions of a young man who finally thought he had found the one, only to not fully understand the true nature of the situation involved. For like any good tale with a twist, it only reveals itself in the closing reel.

Iíll say no more, other than comment on the title, listed at times as King of Swords so as to avoid confusion with a series of other works bearing the Solace name, although as to where King of Swords fits in ... well answers on a postcard here, delightful as it is.

Gay Visibility - overt. 
Nudity - bare-arsed cheek. 
Overall - file under ... 3+ stars. 
available on DVD as part of the Wolfe Video catalogue - 'S Is for Sexy' release
starring: Joey Tuccio, Richard Courtney, James McCartney, Al Rondon
Copyright 2010 David Hall - www.gaycelluloid.com.
archive reference #287
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