Rupert Thomson on Revelation film

Yes, I’m obsessed. With a film I haven’t seen. Fitting, maybe, since Ana Kokkinos’ Book of Revelation adaptation is about obsession — one triggered by the sexual violence a male dancer endures at the hands of masked, shadowy, and naked female perpetrators.

Author Rupert Thomson’s reaction to the film only heightens my frustration that it’s still not scheduled for Stateside release. Here’s a rough transcription of his remarks in an audio interview.

I couldn’t be more thrilled with the way Ana Kokkinos has directed this film. I’d seen her previous film, Head On; I knew how direct and confrontational she is, and how honest she is as a filmmaker.

The film [of The Book of Revelation] is structured in a different way, so it’s a real mystery as to what’s happened to the Tom Long character in the film — to the dancer. And you’re kept waiting as the audience, and you’re very much aware that something terrible has happened.

She’s moved the film away from the book quite a bit in various places, but a piece of film is a very different animal to a book. In order to breathe, and to take on its life, it has to move away. But she’s been really faithful to the spirit of the book.

Related: In a gushing review for Time South Pacific, Michael Fitzgerald notes that the filmmakers “tested the limits of their R18+ rating.” Actor Tom Long, who plays the lead, says he was initially terrified by script, but “‘I am drawn to anything that scares me…. So I had this natural pull towards it.'” And, once again, here are my thoughts on Thomson and his fiction.


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