Progressive Pulse caught up with director Chris Mason Johnson and star Scott Marlowe just before their screening of their film “Test,” which was one of the best movies from last year’s Frameline Film Festival, “Test,” is opening for a limited theatrical run June 6 in the Bay Area and June 13 in Los Angeles and New York.
“Test” is a magnificent period piece that brings us back to 1985 San Francisco when “AIDS” was a word that replaced “gay cancer” and people started becoming more aware of the disease. The film follows a close-knit group of dancers who try to focus on their art, but are always wondering if they have AIDS and if they get tested, who will know the results.
This is truly a depiction of that time. Not only with gay men worrying about being outed and ousted for the possibility of being a carrier for the AIDS virus (in a time when contracting the diseases was a death sentence). The movie also successfully mixes in some terrific dance sequences and loving portraits of scenes from San Francisco. It truly reminds us of life in 1985 with phones with long, tangled chords, answering machines and walkmen.
Johnson tells us of some of his secrets on how he was able to capture that period without exposing the viewer to 2013 San Francisco.
Star Marlowe also confirms that he’s not just a terrific actor, but he actually does his own dancing (no need for Kevin Bacon’s body double from “Footloose.”) In fact, Marlowe tells us that’s he’s part of a popular Bay Area dance troupe, and you can get more information on him at www.levydance.org.
Get the movie’s full schedule at cities across the country (and see where Q&As will occur) at www.testthefilm.com.