Cast: Court Rutter, Krystina Montemurro, Mike Burnell, Rudy Pankow
In the early sixties, a sexually conflicted teenager finds faith and acceptance after escaping the tortures of electrotherapeutic conversion therapy.
The events that inspired this story are based partly on historical occurrences and partly on the experiences of the producer and director. In the mid 70’s, 13 subjects willingly enrolled themselves in a study of “electric aversion therapy” conducted by a BYU graduate student. Between 1971-1989, gay soldiers in the South African Defense Forces underwent chemical castration and medical torture (including the use of electric shocks) to “cure” them of their homosexuality under a program called The Aversion Project. Shock machines were available for in-home use during the mid 20th century, until the APA declassified homosexuality as a mental illness.
These days, electroshock therapy is a blatant violation of human rights. Instead of these physical methods being used, licensed therapists use verbal lashings under a faux cloak of faith-based lessons. Conversion therapy is becoming more obsolete, but is still legal in more than 40 states. It is our hope this film will shine a spotlight on the horrors of what continues to be a serious, life-effecting issue among LGBT minors.
Los Angeles is the mecca of film production and just hours away from our beautiful city. This block features some of San Diego’s strongest short films alongside some of the best short films LA independent filmmakers have produced. Working together with New Filmmakers LA, we’ll get a taste of what our two film communities could do together. Networking is at it’s best during this block of films. Learn more about NewFilmmakers LA at www.nfmla.org.