Noel Alejandro gives us erotic film-making at its most artistic and compelling
If you’re looking for grown-up gay erotica, it doesn’t get any better than the stylishly sexy work of filmmaker Noel Alejandro.
His latest release is Blissing Deal.
After chatting for 18 months, Isaak and Sabbah dive into a compelling conversation about life, dreams and fears. This is a real-life encounter captured by Alejandro as a short film. Blissing Deal shows how intimacy can happen for two strangers – who are not really strangers, after all.
This is the second instalment in a new series from Alejandro called Bedtime Stories. The Bedtime Stories series is going to be an ongoing collection of short films. Each episode will be 10-20 minutes long and will focus on the beauty of intimacy. Alejandro sees the series as an opportunity to create stories that are fresh, intimately inspiring, and visually appealing.
“One of my favourite things about having an independent, self-sustaining project is that it gives me freedom to adapt and evolve as I go…” explains Alejandro. “Last year, having reached the milestone of 13 short films, I went through a breakthrough in two different ways. First, I went through the end of a relationship with a man I thought would be in my life for longer. Like everyone who goes through a heartbreak, my whole self went under a magnifying glass – every little detail about me, my life and my work was under query. Of course, this had an effect on my professional life, and my productivity was reduced to the bare minimum.”
“Like everybody else, after the worst days passed, I started to heal. Time did a wonderful job sieving away all the noise, and I was left with a stronger sense of self. I got inspired again, and had a new perspective on how I would like to face my new chapter. And as was natural, I invested a huge part of that energy into thinking about what I would like to create next.”
“This transformation allowed me to see my work as a two-channel prism. I love writing and shooting stories, and I love to see how my films become a part of those who watch it. And I want to continue doing that for a very long time. At the same time, I also care deeply about experimenting – trying the new, pushing myself over my own limits. This is something I knew was missing in my routine, and that if I wanted it, I’d have to fight for it.”
“Bedtime Stories is born to make this new chapter possible. In this series, releases will be more frequent – around once a month – and slightly more clear-cut. They include everything that I believe erotica should be – a thought-provoking beginning to give the characters a reason to exist together, and my insistent care for the aesthetics and the beauty in the intimate moments. They will be produced flash-style, focusing on the essential, and still visually appealing.”
“With this new frame, I’ll be able to channel some of my creative energy to new, different films. I’ll have time to work on more elaborate scripts and give it a shot, allowing myself to experiment. I feel inspired and hungry to see what new things we can create to express emotion, ideas, feeling and erotica.”
“After a year of ups, downs and healing, this is a new wild ride for me. I hope you enjoy it.”
I Miss You is a film about a heartbreak and the grace of getting through it.
Filmed in Berlin, Alejandro’s description of this film is: When the night comes and there’s only dark, we can hear the heart speaking louder than words. Alone in his bed and immersed in the absence of his lover, a man speaks to no one, begging for another night together. He surrenders to a nocturnal delirium which will fill his room and his head, and which he is willing to live it fully – at least until the morning rises.
The actors featured in the film are Fernando Flores and Messiah Horta, who are also a couple in real-life.
Under the Rain is an explicit film, but it’s a long way from what you might be expecting from your average porn vid.
Alejandro is a filmmaker and a storyteller, and with this production he’s continuing to explore erotica as an art form.
Drawing on his personal experiences and his perspective on art, ethics, obscenity, pornography, career and ambition, Alejandro gives us a surreal, moody, enigmatic, and arousing piece of work.
Under the Rain stars Valentin Braun, Anteo Chara, Markus Reid, and Enki Babylon. In this story, four men immerse themselves an abandoned building for an art project. Boundaries between fiction and reality are blurred, it’s unclear whether their conversations are scripted or actual. Doubts, fears, ambitions, and passions emerge and needs are satisfied.
There’s plenty of explicit sex, and it all feels very real and very authentic.
“For me, the most important thing is to film natural sex…” adds Alejandro. “I guess that’s an indication of the kind of sex that I like. I’ve had encounters with some people who had sex as if they were in a bad porn film, and you could feel that through their fake attitude, their showing off, the lack of any real connection with what they were doing – it was definitely bad sex.”
Alejandro is originally from Barcelona, but now lives in Berlin – where Under the Rain was filmed.
“I’m in love with this city…” says Alejandro, referring to his adopted. “Everybody just accepts their sexuality – never afraid of being too much. Although the weather is bad, for many years Berlin has been the place to be, and it will be for many years – this is a city with powerful vibes.”
He cites as his influences, filmmakers such as Jaime Rosales, Markus Schleinzer, Martin Provost, Michael Hanneke, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, Darren Aronofsky, Lars Von Trier, and Almodovar.
“I think movies should raise problems, questions…” says Alejandro. “Talk about taboos and never limit yourself to anything. A film, for me, is a journey within the psychology and malice of the director. The director has created a work based on a concept that they been growing, modifying, and producing during all the production processes of filming and editing.”
“I realised the lack of variety we had in porn – not only in straight porn but also in gay porn…” explains Alejandro. “In the last few decades, porn has become something completely flat and fake . Most of the actors seem to be more worried about showing off their perfect bodies, instead of having a nice experience with their partner.”
“A lot of women watch my films…” adds Alejandro – who generally works with a predominantly female crew. “ I often have emails from women telling me that they like my work and that they connect with it very easily. That really makes me feel proud of what I’m doing.”