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~Hustler White

‘There are those who will not want to miss “Hustler White” for its scene in which a male prostitute removes his prosthetic leg extension to service a client who has been shown devouring a publication called Amputee Times. There are many, many more who will want to make sure to miss it.

The movie presents the world of Los Angeles street hustlers as a titillating freak show. One young hooker is picked up by a heavily tattooed mortician who changes into dominatrix drag and mummifies him in duct tape. Another is strung up from the ceiling and delicately slashed across the chest and back with razor blades. “Cut me, dear boy!” he implores in a refined English accent.

In between its kinky sexual exhibitions, “Hustler White” follows the adventures of Jurgen Anger (Bruce LaBruce), a writer and sexual tourist who has flown to Los Angeles to research a book on male prostitutes, and Monti Ward (Tony Ward), the young male hooker he engages as his tour guide. Ward, a successful model who was once Madonna’s constant companion, lends the role of Monti a bluff, swaggering charm, even though his character is loathsome. In the opening scene, Monti, fleeing a john in a stolen car, hits a pedestrian, severing his foot, but drives on.’

(Stephen Holden’s review of “Hustler White” in the Times, Nov. 20, 1996.)

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