aGLIFF 2011 (Austin Gay and Lesbian International Film Festival)
By Don Simpson | September 8, 2011
Director: J.T. Tepnapa
Writers: J.T. Tepnapa, Carlos Pedraza
Starring: Charlie David, Troy Fischnaller, Richard Harmon, Sean Paul Lockhart, Timo Descamps, Brent Corrigan, Genevieve Buechner, Dennis Bateman
Zach’s (Charlie David) Hollywood career has consisted thus far of parties and rehab; but he is convinced by Topher (Troy Fischnaller), his best friend and hotshot director, into judging their alma matter’s annual film festival. Returning back to Keystone Summit University forces Zach to face his past head-on, especially when Zach has one-night stand with a budding young filmmaker whose film, Judas Kiss, is in the finals of the competition that Zach is judging. That student goes by the name Danny Reyes (Richard Harmon) — by no coincidence, that is also Zach’s birth name, the very same name that Zach used while he attended Keystone 15 years ago. Oh, and Zach’s Keystone Film Festival winning film from 15 years ago was also titled Judas Kiss. So, yeah, Zach really screwed himself.
Zach scrambles for the answers to the absurd situations in which he finds himself fatefully intertwined. Can changing Danny’s overly cocksure trajectory really help Zach’s future? You will have to stay tuned to find out, although I bet you can guess the ending.
Fantastic performances by all of the actors and stunningly colorful cinematography by David Berry is marred by a lackluster and over-used narrative trope — someone going back in time to assist their younger self in making better decisions. The result is that Judas Kiss comes off as cheesy and moralistic as an ABC Afterschool Special.