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That Man: Peter Berlin (2005)

Cast: Peter Berlin, John Waters, Wakefield Poole, more...
Director: Jim Tushinski
    see all cast/crew...
Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Water Bearer Films
Genre: Documentary, Independent, Biographies, Film
Running Time: 85 min.

As the hedonism of the '70s reached a fever-pitch, few gay porn stars achieved the stratospheric level of success as Night in Black Leather and That Boy star Peter Berlin. In filmmaker Jim Tushinski's insightful documentary tracing the career of the boyish gay icon, interviews with famous friends combine with personal reflection by Berlin himself to tell the fascinating tale of how an average wartime baby from Berlin grew up to become a bastion of '70s debauchery. In addition to being photographed by the likes of Andy Warhol and Robert Mapplethorpe, Berlin also served as an influence to popular shock filmmaker John Waters and adult film mainstay Jack Wrangler. As those popular figures and more come together to pay tribute to the man who helped to usher the homosexual lifestyle into the mainstream, audiences are offered a look beyond the public persona and into Berlin's colorful and compelling personal life. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

That Icon by talltale November 11, 2006 - 1:19 PM PST
3 out of 3 members found this review helpful
Whenever the end of recorded time pops 'round (probably sooner than later), the fellow known as Peter Berlin bids fair to have become the single most remembered and beloved image in the history of gay iconography. Reedy, trim and beautifully endowed, with face and haircut reminiscent of Prince Valiant crossed with the blond of the Dutch Boy Paint ads, Berlin (an assumed name) was and is unlike anyone to come along before or since. And he was only too happy to share his perfect exterior--if not his interior--with us plebes. The sweet and slowly revealing documentary THAT MAN: PETER BERLIN may be hagiography but (as is often the case) ends up showing its subject, warts and all--even if those warts tend toward the inward, never smudging the beauty of this amazing face and body. Narcissistic doesn't begin to describe the fellow's love affair with himself, and yet by its end, the film reveals a richer, more interesting & caring character than you might have expected. Though the movie lets you experience some of the ravages of age, Berlin still looks great for a guy in his 60s. Mostly though, these 80 minutes offer a lovely trip down the memory lane of our misspent youth (even if we weren't lucky enough to have misspent it with the likes of this demi-god). Or perhaps we should say "unlucky" enough, since--as Peter points out--almost all of his old friends are now dead.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 7.12)
16 Votes
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