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Program 23: Trick


Directed by Jim Fall

Special Guest
We welcome Jim Fall as our special guest. Jim will be available for Q&A following the screening.

Jim Fall | Director

Jim’s feature film career started with the acclaimed independent feature “Trick” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and the Berlin Film Festival in Dramatic Competition. Released in 1999, it became  Fine Line’s highest-grossing film of that year. Currently, Jim has written and will be directing “Trick 2”, a sequel to “Trick” that will bring the entire original cast back together for more comic and romantic misadventures.


When Trick came out in 1999, it was something of an anomaly. There are no characters dying of HIV, no homophobia or hate crimes, and it’s not a saccharine coming-out story featuring teens having emotional confrontations with their parents about being gay. The film’s light and earnest romance allows its characters to live in their own skin, even as it flirts with camp and longings of the heart. Capturing the butterflies of a new romance is trickier than you’d think, but Jim Fall’s romantic comedy does it nimbly.

Christian Campbell’s Gabriel is a struggling musical theater composer whose shy nature lets people walk all over him. His straight roommate is always commandeering their apartment for trysts while his best friend, Katherine (Tori Spelling – yes, that Tori Spelling) is a chatterbox who doesn’t know when to keep her mouth shut.

Gabriel ventures out to a gay bar and locks eyes with John Paul Pitoc’s Adonis of a go-go boy, Mark, but there’s just one problem: they have nowhere to go. Instead of giving up (we gays can be extremely goal-oriented when it comes to hooking up), the pair venture all over New York City to find some place that will allow them a few hours of private time. As they are denied at almost every turn, a quiet and tentative romance sneaks up on both of them. Every person wants to give them advice about relationships or sex, and if you aren’t familiar with drag legend Miss Coco Peru, you won’t be able to forget her in Trick.

Some may scoff at romantic comedies, but when they are done well, they can warm your heart as much as any awards-season drama. Trick is carefree and loose, and it pinpoints the moment your emotions connect to your libido. It helps that Campbell’s affable nature clicks effortlessly with Pitoc when they start to get to know one another. If a go-go boy and a musical theater lover can make it work, it truly means there’s hope for the rest of us.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary since its theatrical release, we are proud to bring back Trick to Rochester as our ImageOut of the Archives selection this year.

~ Joey Moser

Awards & Accolades

  • Official Selection – Sundance Film Festival (1999)
  • Jury Award, Siegessäule Reader’s Choice – Berln International Film Festival (1999)
  • Jury Award, Outstanding Emerging Talent: Jim Fall – Outfest LA LGBT Film Festival (1999)

Dates & Times