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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Docudrama > Gay > Internet > Prostitution > Civil Rights > College Boys Live + Greek Pete – A Year In The Life Of A Rent Boy (2009/Water Bearer DVDs)

College Boys Live + Greek Pete – A Year In The Life Of A Rent Boy (2009/Water Bearer DVDs)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+/C     Extras: C-     Main Programs: B-



It is one thing to have a documentary and the other “reality TV”, but two new titles from Water Bearer try to walk the line between the two and with interesting, unexpected results.  College Boys Live (2009) is an actual documentary about a gay couple who has a website for voyeurs where just of age young gay males live and have dozens of cameras watching their every move.  They get money for this and also have to constantly write back to those who write to them.


We see that none of these participants are going to any college, have sad stories behind the smiles and on camera sex they have and get some interesting fans, including some who send more money and other expensive items than they ought to.  We meet the couple who set it up and see the battle the nice upscale neighborhood decides to wage against them to drive them out of their neighborhood.  Instead of being a “gay documentary”, it becomes a character study of prejudice, people, privacy, politics and how all of it plays in the Internet age.


Greek Pete – A Year In The Life Of A Rent Boy (2009) is a “fictionalized” account of the title hustler, a young British man who moves to London to be an “escort” where it is easier and he can make money faster.  In this case, this short work (70 minutes) manages to be brutally honest and share information about the business and world Pete and company live in that many major feature films on the subject (gender preference not withstanding) would not begin to address.  Pete is in good shape, but he knows it takes much more than a good body to compete in what is a highly competitive world.


He is totally aware of how ugly things can get, including the AIDS crisis and those who get it and totally go out of their way to infect others, so he plays it safe himself.  He then flies out to L.A. and has more continued success.  For being a whole year in his life, this seems like too short a work, but his (or his character’s; one and the same?) is a big surprise and this should have been longer but works well enough.


The 1.33 X 1 image on College and anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on Pete are about the same in quality originating in low def video (digital with some analog footage) and has the usual flaws, limits, aliasing and variances like a documentary.  The cameras exposing the lives in College of course are not going to have the highest fidelity either.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 sound in both cases is barely stereo and both have location audio dropouts and other limits, but Greek has some distortion problems that make some talking inaudible and not because of British accents.  The only extra on each is a trailer.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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