Hook-up culture in the gay community is a very interesting phenomenon. While hook-up culture is evident in all sexualities due to apps like Tinder, it has more prominence for gay men. There is a focus - and pressure - on things like numbers, and many form sex additions to keep in the game. 'Sequin in a Blue Room' touches on this issue.
His screen name, Sequin (Conor Leach), is a sixteen-year-old who is constantly checking his Grindr-like app to find older men to sleep with, blocking them after the deed is done. He gets an invite to attend an anonymous sex party. Sequin ends up connecting with a fellow attendee and now uses his past encounters with men to try to find him, but as his search continues things turn darker and darker.
'Sequin in a Blue Room' has many positives; being an Australian film about a young gay teenager is something to celebrate. The idea of diving into hook-up culture is an interesting basis for a film, even if it doesn't do much with it. The film has some really good visual elements and really pretty cinematography, and the acting is quite solid. As mentioned, however, it does fall short it, never wanting to dive too deep into what this can do to a person. This leads to a lack of emotional investment in the lead character, as we don't get much time to get into his head.
'Sequin in a Blue Room' has many positives; being an Australian film about a young gay teenager is something to celebrate.
The film sets up another gay student who is interested in Sequin, but he just looks like Ben Whishaw in 'The Personal History of David Copperfield'. It adds some cute scenes, but feels out of place with the message of the film. On a positive note, Sequin's dad is quite supportive - something not common in queer media, so that was nice to see.
'Sequin in a Blue Room', gets points for telling a queer Australian story and starting a conversation about the often-toxic hook-up culture in the gay community - it just doesn't fully nail the landing.