Winner of Best Canadian Feature at the Toronto Film Festival, Closet Monster follows Oscar’s unusual coming out story.
As a child Oscar is traumatised by his parents’ breakup, and witnesses a violent gay bashing near his school. He’s close with his dad, but it’s a relationship that fractures over time, and his father’s casual homophobia doesn’t help.
That’s where things get strange. Oscar’s life is often interrupted by his retreat into an often gory fantasy world where his closest friend is his pet hamster, Buffy.
When he realises he’s attracted to his tattooed co-worker Wilder, the trauma of his childhood rears its head.
Part horror, part comedy, part drama and part fantasy, it’s a film which stands out in the crowded market of coming out stories.
The violence in the film and Oscar’s fantasies are an allegory for inner conflict, writer and director Stephen Dunn says.
“I wanted to visually and psychologically interpret the feelings of internalised homophobia in a way that could be physically overcome,” Dunn told Same Same.
Check out the trailer below. The film screens this Sunday at the Sydney Film Festival.