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We know we are in for something special when the credits roll over close-ups of a brush leaving paint on a canvas and Jake Render’s fine rendering of Schubert’s Trio in E-flat booms out from the screen. (Viewers may remember its being used in Kubrick’s BARRY LYNDON. It’s beautiful yet at the same time slightly sinister. Incidentally, Schubert was gay.)
The film opens with Ross an ad executive, played by the star Jason Ridge, waking up in bed with his wife, Janie, nicely played by Kylie Ireland. (Don’t worry, guys, she doesn’t have sex and she keeps her clothes on at all times.). Ross makes a half-hearted attempt at a little morning madness, but Janie’s not interested. This is hard to believe as Jason, who certainly has star presence, is one sexy dude. I once said he resembled Ben Affleck to give people some idea of his appearance but that is doing Jason a great injustice, as Jason looks intelligent. More like Ben Stiller, maybe. Anyway, his looks are intriguing and he’s got star power. After they are ready to leave for their respective jobs, Janie tells Ross that her artist brother, Jude, is coming to spend a few weeks with them.
We then see Ross blowing—not a dick—but his presentation to client Tony Scalia. Scalia turns down all Ross’ ideas and it is left to the boss, Nick Capra, to persuade the client to give Ross time to come up with some better ones. The persuasion consists of offering himself to the client. Scalia is more than willing and the two slam into a kiss with the force of two mountain goats butting heads. As Nick’s dick comes out of his trousers, Scalia falls to his knees in worship. If you are into sex in business suits, this scene’s for you. But thankfully, they soon come out of their clothes. Nick does a sensual strip while being sucked. This guy is a wet dream come true with a very handsome face and swimmer’s build. When Scalia finally sheds his clothes, we are surprised at what a great body this mature performer had hidden. He just cant’ get enough of Nick’s dick, and ends up taking it end up. In their respective—and traditional—jackoffs at the scene’s conclusion, Nick’s load is particularly luscious.
Returning home after this unsuccessful day, Ross find Janie’s brother Jude, played with intense magnetism by Rob Romoni. Jude’s interest in Ross is unmistakable and his presence is somewhat unsettling for Ross. Changing his clothes in the bedroom, Ross is further disturbed to discover Jude observing his nakedness. Then as Ross hands Jude a beer, Jude’s finger subtly caresses his hand. At this point Janie arrives with takeout. (Poor Ross, not only doesn’t he get home fucking, he doesn’t get home cooking either.) After Janie goes to bed, Jude—noticing Ross’ tension—begins to massage his neck. But just as things are proceeding to step two of the seduction, the phone rings. It is Ross’ boss calling him in early to work the next day. Nick tells Ross that unless he can come up with an ad campaign for Scalia, his job, insurance, and stock options are kaput.
The despondent Ross returns home to find Jude, clad only in a back jockstrap, painting. It is a sight that Ross finds very disturbing. Noticing his brother-in-law’s discomfort, Jude puts on a pair of jeans. In a revealing scene played out on a balcony overlooking Los Angeles, Jude tells Ross of his past. (It, like all the scenes, is beautifully photographed.) He tells of his affairs with half of the town he was born in and of his mother’s coming home to find him having sex and throwing him out of the house at the early age of sixteen. “Was it with a woman, or…” Ross asks, leaving his question unfinished. Although the question remains unanswered, it lets us know that the thought of two men together is of interest to Ross.
That interest is further tweaked as they watch Chad Hunt and Michael Knight getting it on in the house next door. Chad has one of the biggest dicks in the business and Michael is in the midst of sucking on it. As they watch, Jude takes out his cock and starts to stroke it. A mesmerized Ross also begins to masturbate. Chad is now going down on Michael. Jude reaches over to grab Ross’ dick but his gesture is rebuffed. As Ross continues to watch the action across the way, Jude’s attention is on Ross. Chad rolls a condom down that monstrous appendage (it only fits on half of the dick) and Michael sits on it. He will take it in a standing doggy and—in my favorite—the good ole missionary before they’re through. Ross shoots an impressive load onto the floor. Jude comes almost simultaneously. A mortified Ross heads upstairs but turns back. As he does so, Jude snaps his picture. We see him place the picture on the easel to start a new painting.
In the bathroom the next morning a guilty Ross doesn’t tell Janie about last night, but does tell her about his predicament at work. Janie finds Jude in the living room. “It has to be tonight!” she tells him.
In a montage we see Jude painting and Ross trying to come up with an idea for the client. I thought Jude would be working on his painting of Ross, but it’s the old one he’s still doing. However, the painting has been done as Ross is startled to see it. Even more startled to see that the painting shows Ross with a stiff dick arcing out of his trousers. Finding a video among Jude’s belongings, Ross slips it into the VCR. It is a porn film—not porn movie, but just a porn film. Sebastian Jaymz and Alex Leon are the participants. Both are clad in white briefs. Alex begins eating Sebastian’s ass through the material before dragging the briefs down with his teeth. Sebastian has a divine ass. It is highly munchable, and Alex goes at it with gusto—digging that tongue right in there. He does suck Sebastian’s cock, but it is the ass that gets the real oral workout. Alex lies on the floor for Sebastian to give him head. In a highly erotic bit of foreplay, he uses his mouth to put the condom on Alex’s cock. (Putting on the condom is a major thing in this film, and the director shows us that it can be a real turn on.) Sebastian sits on Alex’s cock before getting it in the other two positions. (Three of the four scenes follow this identical pattern. I would have preferred some variation.)
Ross has been turned on by the video but is turned off by what he finds next—a gun. When he confronts Jude with his discovery the long-awaited sex between them takes place. As Jude’s face nears that of Ross, Ross kisses him passionately. It is Ross who begins the cocksucking. He goes at Jude’s cock like a man who is finally fulfilling a life-long fantasy. Jude, of course, slurps on Ross’ cock and rims his ass. When Jude takes out a condom, Ross is not certain about getting fucked, but Jude inserts the condom on Ross’ cock and offers himself. He squats on Ross’ cock and later gets fucked doggy-style. Ross then submits to being fucked missionary.
As to what happens next, it would not be cricket to tell. If you are interested to see how the film ends, you will just have to buy or rent it.
CANVAS is the third production from this studio and director. In many ways it is an advance on the preceding ones in terms of acting, editing, and continuity. The lighting is properly moody yet none of the action is obscured by artiness. The videograpy is superb. My only quibble with the production values—and indeed with the production itself—is the fact that the sound is often poorly recorded from being filmed in cavernous locations. Hollowness and echoes often make the dialogue difficult to hear, especially in the office and living room scenes. Although this has no bearing whatsoever on the sex scenes, it is something of no little consequence in a plot-driven feature.
In the director’s commentary that he does with star Jason Ridge, Jett Blakk tell us his influence here was Roman Polanski and Italian art films. I find it to be more that of film noir. Not the earlier types of film noir like Double Indemnity, but the more recent manifestations such as Body Heat or The Talented Mr. Ripley. It is also a coming out story, a steady seduction of both Ross and the viewer. In addition to a director and actor commentary, we have a gallery of solos shots and stills from the film, trailers from the earlier films, and a solo by Luis Nunez—a young Latino with a nice build, uncut cock, and great lips that I would love to see in action. There are the usual chapter entries taking you right to the sex if you want to make this a porn film and not a porn movie.
This is a good movie with fine performances, especially from Rob Romoni and Jason Ridge. Jason Ridge has an exclusive contract with Red Devil, but I wish they would loan him out to other studios. Waiting for the next film from Red Devil with Jason Ridge is almost as bad as having to wait for the next installment of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. In the case of CANVAS though, it was worth the wait.