Chickenhawk review by The Grim Ringler

Ya ever want to see a movie for so long that you forget why the hell you wanted to see it in the first place? This is the case with Chickenhawk and me. Other than just the darkest of curiosities at what the film was about, I can’t see why I wanted to see it for so long. Having finally see the film, well, I am glad I saw it but don’t think it was worth searching around for ten years to see it.

Focusing on several men of varying ages, Chickenhawk is about NAMBLA (National Man/Boy Love Association) and some people who belong to the group. Moreso, it’s about the concept of pedophilia and the people who are attracted to young people. The film allows the men to tell their own stories, allowing the viewers to make their own minds up about what to think. We learn of a schoolteacher who loses his job because of his affiliation with NAMBLA and not because of any crime he has committed. There is the man who enjoys drawing lewd pictures and then places them in library books. Another man who tells of a relationship he had with a young boy. Much of this is told one on one, as the people go through their day, but some of it comes out at a gay pride rally, where you see how divided people are when it comes to their beliefs about NAMBLA and their ideas.

Some of the most interesting parts of the film are when we get the opposition to the gentleman profiled and see what these people are like. Angry, hateful, and at times bordering on violent, these men are so violently opposed to the members of NAMBLA that they left me feeling more frightened of them in the end.

Not at all a film that you can enjoy, and one most people will bypass, with good cause, it was a fascinating look into a lifestyle I have never seen much about. I may not agree with what these men believe in – the idea that the age of consent for sex with a minor should be drastically lowered – or what they desire, but I was interested in learning more about them. Sadly, the film doesn’t get as in depth as you might want, but you do get to know a few individuals that will stay with you. And whatever you believe about them, I admire the honesty that these men show. I can’t imagine what possessed them to want to come public with some stories and behavior that borders on or is illegal, but it’s interesting to watch. Hell, this is a good lesson for parents, actually, as they watch one of the men flirting with a young boy. Parents can see what a molester might try in the hopes of getting their child to take a ride with them.

For me, some of the scariest parts of the film were the people opposed to the men in the film. Simply because of their unabashed hatred and willingness to seemingly do whatever they had to to get rid of these men. Being a bleeding heart, I can’t fathom the idea of publicly ruining someone upsets me deeply.

Chickenhawk is the best sort of documentary in that it gives you the facts and details and lets you decide where you stand. I love that. This is not a movie you will like. It will scare you, anger you, and alienate you, but it’s still compelling. I know Film Threat Video put this out ages ago but I saw this thanks to a friend who found it on the usenet. Controversial with reason, this is a classic underground doc that, while a bit limited, is still powerful and absolutely haunting.


8 out of 10 Jackasses
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