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Drifter (Special Edition)

Directed by Pat Rocco

Release: 1974
Runtime: 98
Country: U.S.
Language: English

A prolific filmmaker who explored documentary, narrative, and experimental cinema, Pat Rocco captured the essence of queer culture in the late 1960s and early ’70s, when it was still largely ignored by the popular media. Having achieved notoriety in the gay underground, Rocco expected his third feature to cross over to general audiences. A West Coast response to Midnight Cowboy, Drifter observes the odyssey of an emotionally ambivalent bisexual hustler (Joed Adair) as he wanders through a series of relationships with men and women, yearning for a sense of belonging in a Southern California characterized by impersonal pick-ups and sex for hire. Playful and irreverent, Rocco‘s films could also be disarmingly earnest and sensitive, and might have found a greater audience had not serious gay narratives remained such a stubborn cultural taboo. As it was, Rocco’s breakthrough film failed to receive commercial distribution, and for decades Drifter remained virtually unseen. Fifty years later, Kino Cult celebrates Rocco‘s magnum opus with a 2K restoration from the original 16mm A/B negatives preserved by the UCLA Film and Television Archive, setting the stage for a reappraisal of Rocco’s eclectic and historically significant body of work.

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Technical Info

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1
  • Color: Color