Irish Film Institute -That Man, Peter Berlin

That Man, Peter Berlin

Director: Jim Tushinski

USA 2005| 80 mins

Peter Berlin was an international gay icon of the 1970s, and is best remembered as director and star of classic porn films That Boy and Nights in Black Leather. His carefully styled self image of erotic fantasy – cowboy, sailor, leatherman, hustler – proved an inspiration to Tom of Finland, Andy Warhol and Robert Mapplethorpe, among others. But ultimately he was his own biggest creation, a carefully constructed, unattainable icon awash in eroticism.
His many fans and friends, such as John Waters, Armistead Maupin and porn legend Jack Wrangler, offer their reflections on Berlin as the poster-boy for the hedonistic and sexually liberated 1970s. Most illuminating and exciting, however, is the extensive commentary by Berlin himself, still looking remarkably boyish in his early 60s. Tushinski’s interviews are complemented perfectly by an astonishing archive of photos and film clips that reveal the full scope of Berlin’s work and manages to get beneath the famous skin and reveal something of the soul that hovers beneath.

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