King Cobra

2016

Crime / Drama

20
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 45%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 36%
IMDb Rating 5.6 10 5816

Synopsis


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February 18, 2017 at 10:14 PM

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678.53 MB
1280*694
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 31 min
P/S 10 / 14
1.4 GB
1920*1040
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 31 min
P/S 3 / 10

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bodo 7 / 10

Exudes a sense of fun and hedonism, but doesn't lose track of suspense

KING COBRA is a fast-paced movie tracing the real-life events in the life of Brent Corrigan, a gay porn actor who was illegally performing under age, and who got all tied up in a murder mystery story. I got into this movie naïvely, not actually knowing anything about the history of the true events, not even knowing that James Franco and Christian Slater were involved!— and I was pleasantly surprised.

As to be expected given the premise, there is a lot of male nudity... All throughout the movie exudes a sense of hedonism—one gets the impression that the whole cast had a lot of fun making this little movie. The acting is really good throughout and the main actor, Garrett Clayton, does a good job as appearing "twinky" while also being believably serious when it is called for. James Franco's character is quite reminiscent of his role in SPRING KILLERS.

The real life story of what actually happened surrounding Brent Corrigan is truly compelling, which makes for a good plot. The progression of the story is well executed, but perhaps the ending was a little abrupt. All in all a fun movie. So, go and watch KING COBRA—it's not a masterpiece, but certainly a great little diversion, with a few genuine suspense moments.

Reviewed by Laakbaar 7 / 10

Desire, greed and violence in the gay porn world

This movie is rated too low on IMDb. It's worth about a 7.5 It tells the true story of the murder of a gay porn producer (played by Christian Slater). There are two story lines.

The first is about this porn producer and a new star (Brent Corrigan, played by Garrett Clayton). Brent stays at his place and together they have fun making some hot movies. But then they have a falling out when Brent finds out how much is being made from his films.

The second is about two mentally unbalanced losers (Joe and Harlow) who hang around at the edges of the porn industry. They want to make a film with Brent, but decide that they have to kill the porn producer because he's not allowing Brent to use his trademarked porn name.

I loved how this film dealt so naturally and explicitly with gay sexuality and with the gay porn and escorting aspects. The sex scenes were depicted with relish, but without genitalia. (After all, this is an American movie.) The depiction of stereotypical porn situations and dialogue and was hilarious. At times the real world in the main movie seemed disturbingly too close to the porn version of reality. These characters were so immersed in porn that they were leading porn lives.

Part of me wishes that the director (Justin Kelly) had focused on creating just a feel-good movie about the gay porn industry, about gay escorting and about gay sexuality in California. This alone would have been a great film (or hell even better -- a Netflix series). He could have developed various interesting characters and just drawn the viewer into this sexy world.

Kelly partly succeed in doing that in this film. But I had problems with some of it. Where were the drugs, for example? No drugs at all?? The dysfunctionality of the characters was also a major theme. I wish there had been some normal gay men in the film, because yes we still need to show that in a film like this.

I thought the porn director and Brent parts were well played by Slater and Clayton. However, although Clayton is a stunningly handsome man, in this movie he didn't really generate the same erotic heat as a sleazy 18 year old porn star. The movie would have made more sense if they had found someone who can do that.

I liked how the porn producer was torn between desire and greed when it came to Brent. He wanted Brent's love, of course. He wanted Brent to want him. Or at least to pretend that he wanted him. He was an older porn-producing lech, but there were a few perceptive lines in there about his motivation and he came across as a sympathetic character.

The dysfunction of the Joe and Harlow characters got in the way for me. I found some of their scenes to be difficult and awkward to watch. Perhaps that was the point (because after all they were psychos). After just watching the film, I feel I still don't have a good understanding about the underlying forces that drove them to murder. Maybe the problem is with the basic plot. The murder was so senseless. Tbh, I think the movie would have been better without Franco (because...c'mon).

This is the second movie I've seen this year in which the difficult relationship between porn producer and actor was central. (The other was Tickled.) These movies also have something to say about porn itself, how it can take over people's lives and ruin them.

Reviewed by John Nail (ascheland) 5 / 10

A Fair Amount of Skin but Not Enough Meat

The real life murder of Cobra Video owner Bryan Kocis has all the ingredients for a promising movie: sex, greed, betrayal, lonely/sad people, users/abusers, and, of course, homicide, all revolving around a central character who is as manipulative as he is physically alluring-- an homme fatale, as it were. Unfortunately, though it comes close a few times to fulfilling that promise, "King Cobra" ultimately fails to do so.

At the heart of the story is Sean Paul Lockhart (Garrett Clayton), who, after telling his mother he's going to a film making workshop, leaves his home in San Diego to go make a solo video for Cobra under the name Brent Corrigan. Cobra's owner (Christian Slater), re-named Stephen in the movie, is obviously smitten but grudgingly respects Brent's wishes to sleep in the sparsely furnished guest room rather than join the pornographer in his big, luxurious bed. The Internet is quickly smitten by Cobra's very young discovery, too. Realizing he's got a potential gold mine, Stephen offers Brent more money to make hardcore videos, and a star is born.

Among Brent's growing fan base are L.A. rent boy Harlow (Keegan Allen) and his domineering boyfriend/pimp Joe (James Franco). Inspired by Corrigan's success, Joe starts producing videos starring Harlow. The move makes them enough money for Joe to put the down payment on a coveted Dodge Viper (their video company is even called Viper Boyz) for his star, but not the kind of cash they want or, as it's later revealed, need. What would really put them on the map--making them millions!-- is a video featuring Harlow and Brent Corrigan. Fortunately for them, Corrigan is just as greedy, and after an acrimonious split from Cobra Video, gay porn's latest "It" boy is soon spinning into Harlow and Joe's orbit. But it's Harlow and Joe who spin out of control.

"King Cobra" has several effective moments, most belonging to Slater and Allen. As the owner of Cobra Video, Slater's Stephen is is more sad than sleazy. He reveals that he turned to making gay porn after living so many years in the closet, and yet he still hasn't come out to his family. (His sister--played by an unnecessarily cast Molly Ringwald--still tries to set him up with women.) When Stephen finally badgers Brent into having sex with him he's in heaven, but is clearly heartbroken when Brent rebuffs his attempts to cuddle afterwards. Allen's eager-to-please Harlow is equally sad, his relationship with Joe--not to mention his involvement in the sex trade--only deepening the psychic wounds caused by child sexual abuse, not healing them.

And then there's James Franco.

That Franco is in this movie is not much of a surprise: Franco worked with director Justin Kelly before ("I Am Michael"), and "King Cobra" caters to Franco's dual fascinations with homosexuality and pornography. (It's only a matter of time before Franco just gives in to temptation and asks the Falcon Studio Group to put him in one of its videos.) Unfortunately for Kelly, he didn't get Oscar Nominated James Franco. Instead, he got Slumming Soap Opera Guest Star James Franco. Whatever potential "King Cobra" had at being taken seriously is dashed the moment Franco's on screen, the actor apparently thinking Kelly was making a porn parody. To be fair, it's not always clear whether Kelly was trying to make a gay-themed equivalent of "Foxcatcher" or a satire a la "To Die For," but Franco's over-the-top performance is completely wrong in either case.

After Brent reveals he made a few of his early videos before his 18th birthday, a porn producer for a bigger company tells the performer to lay low for a while, mentioning that Traci Lords was able to bounce back from a similar scandal. The Lords reference is fitting for Brent. Like Lords, Brent Corrigan is a divisive figure in the porn world, viewed as either a kid who made some bad choices or a scheming little b--ch. As played by Clayton (much cuter than the real Corrigan, IMO), he's a little bit of both, leaning more towards portraying him as a quick learner who's not quite as clever as he thinks he is.

Likewise, "King Cobra" is not as clever as it thinks it is. Like a lot of movies set in the world of porn ("Rated X," "Lovelace"), it shows some skin but it doesn't have enough meat to satisfy its lurid story. Franco, however, provides plenty of ham.

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