WATCH: Feature Film Trailer “H.E. (Handsome Enigma)”
From the team that brought you the web series “T.R.A.D.E. It All” and “Vampire G” comes a trailer for their new feature film called “H.E.. (Handsome Enigma),” a film that tackles the issue of domestic violence in gay relationships.
Directed by accomplished celebrity fashion designer KL Allen, the film stars Jonathan Smith (Nashville, BET’s The Game, HBO’s Treme, Hunger Games), Jevon Loving (Male Model), Kenyon Glover (Former NBA Player, TVONE’S Born Again Virgin), Rion Williams (Nashville), Tinashe Mahachi and Chole Stafford.
Talon Alexander Jordan and his friends visit Club Currency to celebrate his 27th birthday. What is meant to be a night of celebration amongst friends, turns into a night that changes Talon’s life forever. Talon, meets club promoter Raynard “RJ” Lennox JR who he believes is the love of his life. Three months later, after moving in together Talon begins to discover RJ has another side of him and ends up on an emotional roller coaster of physical and mental abuse that could end up costing him his life if he doesn’t get out.
Hopefully the story will be well told, but for a feature film directed by an accomplished fashion stylist, I expected to see more striking visuals in the shot selections. Based on the trailer, everything here seems rushed.
For example: I would expect to see more attention to the use of color, not only in the wardrobe but also in the surrounding set decoration and props.
The use of color, framing and placement of the subjects is vital to a stylist’s knowledge arsenal when working on photo shoots, seems like that experience would have been carried over to a film made by a stylist. Even if it takes more time (and money) to shoot, the perfect shot is all that matters in the world of fashion.
Notice that pretty much all of the screenshots below have the same boring two-person framing. The camera rarely seems to hover above, behind or close-up to the actors.
Another film directed by fashion stylist Tom Ford, “A Single Man” (also featuring gay men), comes to mind. Granted Ford had a much larger budget. However, this trailer (without a single word of dialogue or text on the screen) demonstrates that strong emotional story elements and plot can be conveyed through composition, color and close-ups alone if attempted.
This critique is not meant to single out the producers or director, only to encourage more creativity from gay filmmakers in this historically visual medium.
We’ve only seen this teaser trailer for “H.E. (Handsome Enigma)” though, maybe the full film offers a more unique visual style/look.
- Good looking, healthy young men don’t have permission to be depressed, just my jaded opinion.
- Where can I purchase my “female best friend” who only loves to go to clubs with black gay men?
- Hopefully the film explores the realistic motivations of the abuser, not just the abused. Too often domestic violence stories are depicted in black & white “he’s possessive, nuff said” simplicity.
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