Jay Corcoran’s documentary focuses on seven gay New Yorkers struggling with crystal meth addiction. The men are at different levels of kicking their habits, and all have faced some crisis as a result of their addiction (one man developed gonorrhea, another saw his career evaporate, another required the intervention of a social services agency to find a new apartment when he became homeless).
All of the men share another common trait: basic denial of what created their problem. Some blame the homophobic nature of American society, others condemn the excess behavior of the gay subculture, others cite family problems – but nobody is willing to should the full blame for their blatantly self-destructive behavior. The fact some of these men have been living with HIV+ status only compounds the perception of crass recklessness.
It is a tragic and harrowing subject, to be certain, but eventually the film becomes little more than a tiresome collection of immature, irresponsible and (quite frankly) very dull men who are suffering from their own blatant stupidity and crude hedonism. It also doesn’t help that Corcoran’s filmmaking style is frequently sloppy (some scenes have poor lighting, others have inadequate sound).
Perhaps the film may have been more effective with a shorter running time, a focus on the medical aspects instead of the tiresome personal histories, and more attention to production values. In its current state, however, the film is a mess and a bore.