The Fruit Machine | IMAGE+NATION

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montreal LESBIAN GAY BI TRANS film festival

The Fruit Machine

Sarah Fodey 2018 Canada 90min english
Synopsis: 

Powerful, vital, heart-shredding – Sarah Fodey’s documentary The Fruit Machine is essential viewing for all Canadians. Structured as a series of eye-opening portraits of former civil servants and military veterans who were victims of the “gay purge” of the 1950s-90s, the film allows the viewer to pay tribute to these LGBTQ individuals; to learn of their perseverance and pain, and what they endured. The Orwellian surveillance and interrogation tactics, which involved the so-called Fruit Machine and its analysis of pupillary response. The humiliation of dismissal. The electroshock therapy. The subsequent torment, drug and alcohol abuse, and suicide that afflicted those whose lives were overturned. While these young people suffered for being a “threat to Canada,” others around them were committing far more compromising moral failings and egregious crimes, often at the expense of these individuals’ dignity – and all for simply wanting to be of service to their country. Sarah Fodey’s monumental accomplishment may be difficult to stomach, but it’s lovingly crafted and altogether necessary to witness. – Michael Belcher

Université Concordia Cinéma Alexandre de Sève
PGM7