The Adonis Factor attempts to
cover the topic of the obsession of body images, how gay men view themselves
and how gay men type casts each other in the gay community. Muscle Heads,
bears, chubs, twinks, etc.
I first saw the documentary film about a year ago. I had my opinions and
have been meaning to write a review about it for some time. Because so much
time had pass, I decided to re-watch it, just to see if there was anything I
may have forgotten or issues that may have stood out.
Before my re-viewing, I got online to see what some of the critics and other
viewers had to say about the documentary. I wanted to know if they shared my
Interestingly the majority of viewers and critics don’t like the movie. They
feel the documentary is a slickly put together film, filled with “Eye Candy”,
gay public displays of affection and to many quick snippet interviews from
mostly superficial gay men dealing with or not properly dealing with serious
(or not serious enough) issues.
They feel the film does not go in depth to really address the pressing concerns
affecting the gay community concerning body images, superficial-ness and self
Well for the most part I agree but I am not as critical. This is the first
documentary I have seen to ever attempt to cover these issues. For that I
give this film high praises!
The interviewees range from everyday
gay men of all shapes, sizes, and races. From models, porn actors and
directors, DJ’s, personal trainers to therapists. Yes many of the
interviewees do seem shallow. Yes many are stereotypical. But guess
what…these people do exist in the gay community. Yes there is a lot of
“Eye Candy” in the film which can be a minor distraction but again the topics
raised and discussed are not talked about enough concerning the gay
Many of us grew up and out seeing images of square steel jawed, beef cake, six
pack men in media and in porn. The soap opera hunks, the male cover
models, the diesel men in the music videos who represent masculinity and
While much of the media attention in the 90's and into the new century focused
on girls (and still does) with eating disorders and self esteem issues, the
media did and still does for the most part ignore the boys who were suffering
from some of the same issues due to the stereotypical ideas surrounding male
masculinity, toughness and not showing emotions. The reality is that these
boys grow up to be men with low self esteem and low self worth, while
attempting to look like the men on TV and in magazines.
As we know most men are visual creatures and many gay men visualize having that
hot body and having sex with a man with a hot body. As I was once told,
gay men are looking for other men with the superficial “Trifecta” …FACE,
BODY and DICK.
I remember being a chubby
teenager and watching Salt N Pepa’s “Whatta Man” music video. I
remember the scene on the beach and how they reacted to the sexy men running in
speedos. I realized this imagery is what people want. This is what is
attractive and sexy. This is what I want my chubby self to look like so
people will think I am attractive and sexy. Not realizing at the time, I was
just fine how I was.
Well of course with many awkward young homosexual boys and men who may not have
a high sense of self worth or self esteem, these images along with the quest
for the perfect male body can have lasting negative impacts.
The Adonis Factor brings these issues to the forefront with candid conversation
with its subjects. There are nuggets of self evaluation, self development and
inspiration with commentary from doctors and therapists. I did get a
sense that there was not a “resolution” by the time the documentary ends;
however for me the film’s short comings are not important because it is a great
starting point to discuss and further the film’s topics of conversation.
You or gay men you know will be able to identify and relate with something in
this film. At only 70 minutes in length, this documentary is perfect
to watch with a group of your friends which will definitely get the thought
provoking conversations started.
I give kudos to the writer, director and producer Christopher Hines. I
think this is a good follow up to his first documentary “The Butch Factor”. I am glad someone
thought enough of us to at least offer something to get us talking in hopes of healing and making
Thank you for creating something positive to help gay men move forward!
The Adonis Factor is available for streaming on "Netflix".
The trailier is below.
SOURCE: DISCREET CITY