Cypher Avenue Rating: 4.5 of 5      

Its rare that we find a film, television or web series featuring black gay characters that breaks from the typical stereotypes and story cliches (a group of best gay friends sharing laughs and tears as they look for sex & love). The rare times you’ve seen us share videos featuring black gays breaking the norm, the films were (almost always) from non-black filmmakers (Rivers Wash Over Me, Elliot Loves, Skin Deep, Children of God, W Delta Z, Strange Thing About the Johnsons,  etc). The short film, Animal Drill, proves to be no exception to the rule.
Directed by Patrick Murphy, this deep, complicated, aggressively raw short film masterfully weaves manhood, masculinity, homosexuality and acceptance all in 22 short minutes. The film achieves this without having the narrative be entirely about ‘being gay’ or looking for a boyfriend. Taking place in the world of High School Basketball, Animal Drill tells the story of a black gay son, struggling with his sexuality, who tries out for the varsity team in an attempt to repair his relationship with his disapproving father. He faces adversity for being gay on the court, in his home and within himself.

The best thing about this film is the main character handles his situation not by crying but by standing up for himself, even when’s he’s pushed and punched repeatedly. This is the visual representation of what I was describing in my controversial article, Real Men Don’t Cry: A Defense of Hyper-Masculinity. Check out this superbly written, directed and acted short film and let us know what you think.