a short film by Jules Nurrish
2005 | 12 mins | UK
›› No Ordinary Joe
a Joe Orton inspired coming-of-age story.
No Ordinary Joe by Jules Nurrish Written and directed by Jules Nurrish, this well-crafted British short taps into the genre of emerging teenage sexuality, only with a far more up front edge to it, than what we generally get to see.

For football mad Matt mixes his love of the beautiful game, with his love of the works of Joe Orton and a sexual orientation that is all but obvious, even if his family and best friend Gary are seemingly unaware of Matt's sexual proclivity. Only could words of advice from an ordinary or perhaps not so ordinary Joe, finally prompt Matt to get up close and personal with that hunk of a football substitute that he's been lusting after, before both the game and the short come to an end?

With more than a nod and a wink to the writing style of Joe Orton, this sexually direct work plays heavily on a series of Orton inspired voiceovers in order to convey the thoughts of the lead character. All of which works well, until Nurrish plays supernatural games by bringing Orton back from the dead. Thankfully Matt Warman as Orton gives a remarkably convincing performance as the satirical playwright, whilst Alexis Gregory as Matt perfectly captures the raging hormones of youth, in spite of the sequence between the two being somewhat false.

Then again, Nurrish wanted to make a film that was based on Joe Orton's diaries, in the form of the writing style of the man himself. To that end he succeeds, given it allows the ghost of Orton to extend his philosophy on life and here cue the line "you know it all ends in disappointment, but there is beauty along the way." An apt piece of dialogue, for there is many a beautiful moment to be found in this work, as Nurrish packs a lot into a mere twelve minutes, with scenes of Matt with his family and cheeky chappie of a best friend, playing alongside some spirited locker room camaraderie, together with a highly realistic cruising sequence. Well-executed throughout, this is a sharp coming-of-age story guaranteed to entertain Mr Sloane and the boys alike.
screened as part of the 19th London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, 2005.
starring: Alexis Gregory, Will Irvine, Matt Warman, Harry Capehorn, Jackie Howe, Michael O'Flaherty,
Rebecca Probyn, Dean Holley, Alastair Thomson Mills, John Last,
Daniel Gennis, Sinden and Dean Connolly.
Copyright 2008 David Hall - www.gaycelluloid.com.
archive reference #173
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