"Stud Life" is a touching and thought-provoking film that explores the culture and deeper social issues of London. It touches on gender, race and class politics through the relationship of two friends and their romantic misadventures.
JJ (T’Nia Miller) is a stone cold butch and her best friend Seb (Kyle Treslove) is a feminine gay guy. The fact that they are of different races means nothing because they are "bredren." JJ shares her take on life through monologues that are presented as YouTube style videos. She has strong opinions about what makes a good relationship and what gay women want. She also shares her views on what’s going on in the film through these "videos."
JJ meets Elle (Robyn Kerr) and suddenly everything changes. Her relationship with Seb is called into question. Meanwhile, Seb is continuously seeking out rough trade and spurning the advances of the shockingly posh drug dealer Smack Jack (Simon Savory). As JJ learns more about Elle, she starts to question what she wants from relationships in general.
"Stud Life" is named for JJ being a "stud" in the London lesbian community. It explores a unique microcosm of London. It has its own language and experiences, including being accosted by street thugs and being called "batty boy." Through JJ we see not only the butch perspective but we also see love, relationships and perspective of a unique group of people.
Ultimately, "Stud Life" is about love. The love of the two friends transcends all race, cultural and gender lines. We all want love in our lives and people who respect and appreciate us.
"Stud Life" feels like real life. The relationships feel authentic. The characters are multi-dimensional. They have drives, unique perspectives and full-fledged back-stories. Through JJ and Seb we see certain sexual politics. JJ is frank and honest about what she doesn’t like sexually. This opens up a bedroom door and shares a perspective not always explored. Lesbian female sexuality isn’t always explored. Some body parts and acts may be off-limits. These boundaries are worth spreading to the public so that people can feel okay with their specific boundaries.
"Stud Life" is a great independent film with low budget moments that only add authenticity to the characters relationships. It captures a slice of life and relationships that feel real and inspire us all to look for love in our lives. It’s definitely a film worth seeing for a trip to gay Great Britain.
This article is part of our "Boston LGBT Film Festival" series. Want to read more?
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