"9 Dead Gay Guys," a dark comedy in the John Waters tradition, takes place in such a cartoonish, good-natured universe it's hard to imagine anyone taking offense. Pic could connect with crossover audiences as well as with the obvious gay market.

“9 Dead Gay Guys,” a dark comedy in the John Waters tradition, takes place in such a cartoonish, good-natured universe it’s hard to imagine anyone taking offense. First-time writer-director Ky Mo Lab signals his intent through the judicious use of such tricks as freeze-frames, sped-up slapstick, and superimposed titles announcing (with arrows) “Dead Gay Guy #1,” etc. Set in what appears to be a hetero-free London, the story is partly a bad-taste remake of “Cinderella,” with the heroes searching for a murderer who can be identified only by the tiny size of his member. Pic could connect with crossover audiences as well as with the obvious gay market.

Story is narrated by Byron (Brendan Mackey), a Dublin lad who sees London as the promised land, but soon becomes a working boy in order to pay the rent. When his cute, naive mate Kenny arrives, he too quickly ends up in the same trade. As their clients start dropping dead under mysterious circumstances, they decide to hunt for the killer. Part of the film’s central joke is that both men, who consider themselves straight, begin to wonder if they really are.

9 Dead Gay Guys

U.K.

Production

A TLA release of a Little Wing Films/Nine Films production. Produced by Lamia Nayeb. Executive producers, Amit Barooah, Robert Bevan, Amanda Coombes, Peter Errington, Andrew Melmore, Charlie Savill. Directed, written by Ky Mo Lab.

Crew

Camera (color, widescreen), Damien Elliott; editors, Chris Blunden, Jonathan Braman; music, Resident Filters, Stephen Parsons; production designer, Nik Callan; art director, Gareth Underwood. Reviewed at Palm Springs Film Festival, Jan. 10, 2003. Running time: 83 MIN.

With

Glen Mulhern, Brendan Mackey, Simon Godley, Steven Berkoff, Raymond Griffiths, Fish, Karen Sharman.

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