23rd Oct: It's time for the Second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest! Details here.
Mysterious Skin is a 2005 drama film (though produced in 2004) directed by Gregg Araki, who specializes in avant-garde films about homosexual relationships. It is based on the novel of the same name by Scott Heim.At eight years of age, Neil McCormick (portrayed by Chase Ellison as a boy and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a teen) discovers he is homosexual, developing an obsession with his mother's boyfriends and the men in her Playgirl magazines. He develops a crush on his baseball coach (Bill Sarge), who takes advantage and starts seducing him. One stormy night, an incident happens...Several years later, Neil has grown up into a teen and has became a gay hustler. Meanwhile, another teen named Brian Lackey (George Webster as a boy and Brady Corbet as a teen) who is obsessed with alien abduction conspiracy theories is trying to piece together his past. He cannot remember the events of several hours in his youth, and he assumes that during this time, aliens had abducted him.The two eventually meet, and the horrible liberating truth about what happened in their childhood is revealed...While the film was critically-acclaimed, it was extremely controversial for its child-molestation-related subject matter. Moral Guardians in Australia attempted to have it banned, on the grounds that it could be used by real pedophiles to groom children. In order to protect the welfare of the child actors during the abuse scenes, Ellison and Webster had separate scripts from those of the rest of the cast, and were only asked to perform actions such as moving their hand up and down to mimic a handjob, which were then spliced with the other scenes to give the final appearance.
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