›› Orpheus' Song ‹‹

a film by Tor Iben.

2019 | 75 mins | Germany.

a sensuous take on a Greek holiday bromance.

Dave says:

Lightweight in delivery and homoerotic, rather than sexually explicit by nature, this somewhat undemanding, if sensuous take on a Greek holiday bromance from writer and director Tor Iben of The Visitor fame, to name but one of his many same-sex features, is laced with a series of overtly gay sequences to delight the boys, only for fall short of achieving cinematic gold, or even silver for that matter.

Then again, perhaps that's of no surprise when the story hasn't really that much meat on its narrative bone, given this is but the tale of two gym-obsessed best friends - cue Julien Lickert as Enis and Sascha Weingarten as Philipp who win a trip to Greece, only to find that their holiday of a lifetime is at a distinctly out-of-season, albeit four star hotel. With more staff than customers and a nightlife seemingly of the non-existent kind, the two opt to make the most of their holiday by exploring the surrounding countryside, only to end up getting lost. By chance they come upon a ukulele playing youth by the name of Hercules (Henry Morales) who offers then shelter for the night, along the way getting them drunk on some local brew and warning them of the dangers of eating an enchanted pomegranate, one that is set to bring certain death, or eternal devotion.

And that's more-or-less all there is to it, apart that is from the repercussions of their same-sex passion upon their return to Berlin; a close-of-play that could have said far more, than what it did. Yet we have trouble at mill here folks, for whilst officially this is the story of two friends, one straight and one gay; the problem with that is that it begins as the story of two straight best friends, given Enis is seen in the company of his best friend and perhaps more Kristina (Kristina Kostiv) from the onset, whilst upon their arrival at the hotel Philipp is soon to be found making eyes in the direction of a local girl, played by Astrid Kohrs, to hard hitting effect. Not that this sexual uncertainty lasts for long, as it soon becomes apparent that this is but another variant on the age old theme of - falling in love with your straight best friend, as Enis is clearly struggling to come to terms with his homosexuality, having hidden feelings for Philipp, with the man himself only happy - perhaps too happy, to tease him in that direction. All of which makes for a situation that finds Enis at times uncomfortable to be around Philipp, not wishing to let his lust for the man ruin their close friendship. To that end, the Lickert / Weingarten boys make the most of their somewhat underdeveloped roles, given the narrative is just a question of not if, but more when and where their rampant sexual desires for each other will break free.

No surprise then that here we find Iben pay homage to the controversial in its day 1953 classic From Here to Eternity, with the boys rolling around in the sand much as did Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr back in their time, only now naked as the day they were born. Complete with tourist-like shots of the palace of Achilleion, together with a series of picture postcard views of the island of Corfu in all of its sun-kissed glory, the result is but a guaranteed happy ending fashioned crowd-pleaser, intercut with more shots of the male physique than seen in a catalogue for posing pouches. And whilst Iben does try to expand the storyline, including a heartstrings styled ending, at just seventy-five minutes long, you kind of get the impression that he ran out of ideas. That said, what is to be seen is lovely.

›› available as part of the TLA RELEASING catalogue: 10th February, 2020 / UK.
›› revised: Thursday, 3rd February, 2022.

Gay Visibility - overt. 
Nudity - the full monty. 
Overall - file under ... 3 stars. 

donations are the lifeblood of Gay Celluloid;
every drop helps keep it online - thank you :)
Copyright 2021 David Hall - www.gaycelluloid.com.
archive reference #2021043 - revised.
click for gay celluloid - home