The Adonis Factor

Documentary USA 2010

Do looks matter? When it comes to the male physique in the gay community, the answer is of course a resounding YES. In this fascinating, thought-provoking documentary, filmmaker Christopher Hines (The Butch Factor, Frameline33) turns his camera on guys of all shapes and sizes to explore how body image affects status among gay men. Through intimate interviews with men across the United States, including several from the Bay Area, Hines uncovers the very common, often unsettling reality of how many gay men struggle to achieve and maintain a particular image in order to be accepted. As he talks with experts and everyday folks, we hear how body discrimination can lead to feelings of inadequacy, as well as issues around drug abuse and severe eating disorders that transcend sexual orientation. One especially muscular guy admits that even though he knows it's superficial, he "feels more respected and accepted" when people compliment his look. Hines explores how these issues trickle into other areas of our modern world by looking at everything from the gay porn industry to a naked yoga class in San Francisco that helps students feel more comfortable with their bodies. The Adonis Factor deftly balances diverse viewpoints and voices to paint a picture of a complex world where beauty is too often considered skin deep. — BRENDAN PETERSON

GLBTmovieDatabase 2013-04-09

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