Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Crank Yankers: "eXposed: The Making of a Legend" (2005)

What a great idea for a mockumentary! Thirty-nine actors, two directors, and a lot of lubricant gather for a two week location shoot. The film being lensed is "Buckleroos," a four hour gay porn western about a mysterious man in black and a magical belt buckle that attracts hot men to the wearer...except "Buckleroos" is a real film, and "eXposed: The Making of a Legend" is no behind the scenes mockumentary.

Directors Jerry Douglas and John Rutherford have scheduled an almost three week shoot (a lifetime in porn standards) and have flown cast and crew to a working ranch near Sacramento, California. The two main leads in the film are Dean Phoenix and Marcus Iron, with gay porn legend Zak Spears in the non-sex role of the man in black.

The viewer is treated to a long behind the scenes feature like many you find on mainstream DVDs today. Except this film is different. Sure, mr. Pam's (AKA Pam Dore) giggling is a little distracting and we do get a lot of mutual admiration societies going from both cast and crew.

But how many of you have been on a gay porn shoot?...okay, you, put your hand down...anyone else? Most straight porn behind the scenes featurettes feature just more sex, with visibly bored chain smoking crew members waiting for lunch to be called. Here, mr. Pam gets in the cast and crew's faces (and crotches), and we see how they really are. Dean Phoenix is so cute and charismatic, he could easily be doing mainstream films. Zak Spears is a deep voiced combination of Bruce Willis and the Rock, a perfect action star. Two guys playing Mormon missionaries are here, and despite their interviews you would swear they were no older than fifteen.

We get to meet the lone straight crew member, who helps actors "prepare" for their scenes just by standing next to them. There is actor Ricky Martinez, so proud of his manhood that it is jutting out of his shorts at full attention during his entire interview. The cast also includes a landscape designer, a former Pentecostal minister, and a law student (a very witty guy named Brad Benton).

Actual suspense is generated- they tell people who ask they are shooting a blue jeans commercial, explaining away sweaty shirtless guys running around in 103 degree heat on public highways. A wave of food poisoning strikes the set on the last day of shooting. The film ends at "Buckleroos"'s triumph at the GayVN Awards (gay porn's Oscars) months later.

The film is full of nude men sporting and rubbing their erections. It is a gay porn shoot, after all. mr. Pam does a great job of editing together both revealing interviews and what it takes to shoot sex and dialogue scenes.

I would have liked to see more on Douglas' script (how do you write gay porn?) and the marketing of the film, since gay porn is an even smaller niche than straight porn. The timing between the debut of "Buckleroos" and "Brokeback Mountain" seems coincidental, the Oscar nominated film is not even mentioned here.

"eXposed: The Making of a Legend" is not your everyday behind the scenes featurette that I refuse to watch on DVDs nowadays. There is actual care going into the production of "Buckleroos," which is almost refreshing considering Hollywood's latest slump. Hey, studio execs! A four hour film shot in three weeks! Can you wrap your minds around that? (* * * *) out of five stars.