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The Independent Critic

Yorgo Glynatsis, Robby Khela, Tom Pitiris, Sarah Griffin, Reza Diako, Tania Pieri
Yorgo Glynatsis, Chloe Potamiti

 Movie Review: Trigger 
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Anthony (Yorgo Glynatsis) is a 29-year-old mixed European actor and cabin crew member. As we meet him, he seems delightful with a quiet charisma and personable nature that makes us immediately understand why he's arrived in this room to audition for the reality TV show Dream Island. 

I can easily picture enthusiastically watching him week after week. 

The casting director (Sarah Griffin) is a hospitable sort, or so it seems. With a painted on smile and a spirit of inquiry, they immediately begin asking stereotyping questions with nary a boundary insight. First, they inquire about his sexual orientation and, subsequently, his taste in men. As the conversation, perhaps more aptly called an inquiry, continues the questions become darker and deeper and more disturbing. 

Most would be triggered, as Anthony is, a memory flashing forward of a London house party and a traumatic event. 

Co-written and directed by Glynatsis with Chloe Potamiti, Trigger is, as you might guess, about sexual consent and, perhaps even more obviously, sexual assault. At under 11 minutes in running time, Trigger moves forward at a brisk clip and powerfully portrays the reality of sexual assault, in this case within the LGBTQI+ community where 40% of gay men and 47% of bisexual men have experienced sexual assault other than rape compared to 21% of their straight counterparts. Glynatsis accurately and vividly, at least from the perspective of this sexual assault survivor, captures the random nature of triggers and the difficulty of raising these issues. 

Glynatsis's performance is the vital link here. You like him immediately and care about him immensely by the time, only moments later, he's in a situation that we can all tell isn't going to end well. It's not necessarily the "usual" expression of sexual assault that society often demands, however, rest assured it is, in fact, nothing less than sexual assault. 

Glynatsis's performance is profound here and Griffin, tasked with a difficult role, is equally precise and quite strong here. 

Trigger screened at nearly a dozen indie film fests and picked up the Best International Short Film prize at Film Fuse International Festival, Kingston Upon Thames. While films centered around sexual assault aren't exactly "popular" in nature, they're vital and necessary and this one is both narratively and cinematically quite powerful.

Picked up for distribution by Gonella Productions, Trigger can be seen on streaming platforms such as Amazon Prime (UK/US) as part of the "These Untold Secrets" compilation and on Gay Binge TV. 

Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic