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When it comes to mainstream movies, there is often a lot of bellyaching over sequels and remakes. Usually, it's because the people involved are talented enough to come up with something brand new, just too lazy to do it. However, "Closed Set: Titan Stage One" is definitely an exception to the laziness rule. Director Joe Gage is definitely covering familiar territory here, but with the élan and spirit perhaps only he can muster. Nothing here seems cliché or musty in the least. In fact, it's some of the freshest most vibrant pornography I've encountered in a long time, a sexathon that starts with a burst of force that doesn't abate until the end credits. Gage stuffs a lot into "Closed Set," but in this case, there is no such thing as too much.
Youthful and innocent looking, pale light Mason Wyler confidently struts onto Studio One at the imposing Titan Media compound. The barebones wooden set already has action. Lean brunet Derrick Hanson is playing with beefy bearded Hunt Parker. Tattooed Derrick and the hairy Hunt take their act to a glory hole while Mason takes up a camera to record it. Derrick does a feisty blowjob on Hunt's thick cock, making sure to suck it all, and do it with slow passionate resolve. Strapping bearded Tom Lazzari is also on hand with a camera, getting in close to the action and poking out his own boner as he films. Unable to just watch any longer, he sticks his cock through a second glory hole, forcing Derrick on double duty. Derrick stays as hard as his charges as he furiously blows back and forth. Hunt lets loose a truly massive cum spray all over Derrick (it would have probably gone ten feet further if Derrick's chest hadn't been there to sop it up). Tom provides an almost equal blast for Derrick and Derrick himself yet a third one!
It's then off to "Tryouts" for a spot in the film. First up is redhead Lee Raleigh, sporting big colorful tattoos and a manicured beard. He has to show off cocksucking abilities, and he's a natural. He gulps at cock with the intent only of fitting the entire piece on his mouth and achieves that aim smoothly. The stunt cock is a thick one, but Lee is just that good, and rewarded with a hefty shot all over his shirt after a short sucking stint. "Guess I did it right," Lee notes when he's done.
Lee has earned a place in the shoot, so he goes to suck Derrick's cock while Tom eats at Hunt's ass in prep. Once the calm Hunt is ready, Tom calls over Derrick to fuck him. He goes in slowly and then sprints ahead with a jackrabbit fuck. Agile Derrick fucks efficiently and gets Tom to beat off quickly beside him. Derrick follows with his second shot
In another tryout, round-faced bearded Josh West is paired with nervous smooth big guy Steve Trevor to see what they will do solo with each other. Smiling Josh gets to his own cock first, only then undressing to his chiseled body. Taking their cues from the off-camera director, Josh helps Steve jack off his lubed cock. Steve does the same and then returns to his own to shoot big, which gets Josh to pop out a quiet one. Add two more to the roster.
Back on the set, cameraman Mason is now shirtless and filming, showing he has the bod to be in the action rather than outside of it, but his job now is to film Mark Stern, another big thick guy, sucking the heck out of Steve's thickness. He does so loudly and happily, with Steve's old pal Josh soon joining them. Josh gets to help out suck Steve, something he looked like he was dying to do in the previous scene. Steve comes ferociously alive when he helps Mark suck Josh's incredibly shaped hook dick. Both do phenomenal deep-throats, which gets Mason hard and proud, exposing his giant uncut cock to anyone who cares to notice. Mark gets to bottom for Steve, who needed a full scene and all the trappings to turn into a beast of a performer, full of total energy. His fuck literally rocks the noisy set. Josh gets his turn in Mark's ass as well, with Steve moving his cock to the bottom's mouth. Steve punches Josh's chest to keep him focused, and Josh gives a zesty fuck as well. Mark is used as the trio's cum receptacle.
Mason finally finishes himself off (how long can you expect a guy to watch and not take care of it?) and then goes to join the real action on the set, the heart of the movie. Already present are the ever-luscious über-manly Jon Galt, spat upon and ready to suck the combined cocks of true muscle gods Tober Brandt and Mike Grant. Jon isn't the only one with a ready mouth, for the giant Tober bends over to suck him, while Mike blows hero Mason, alternating that with some ass-munching of Tober. Josh watches from the sidelines, hard and ready for more action. Tober and Jon switch and then Mason valiantly slams his own mouth down on Mike. There is a lot of grunting and slapping and spitting, real angry butch muscle work, but Mason is never forgotten. The testosterone vim sends the boys into overdrive and they become a sucking and rimming quartet of incredible lust. Josh finally joins and makes it even more potent, with Mason skipping out for a bit. After the very heated oral, Mike unleashes some venom by fucking Jon, followed by Tober with a mean fuck that shows him really to be king of this scene. That title can only be won by the strongest, and man oh man, does Tober fit the bill! Mason returns to play with the big boys as a bottom, all but split open by Tober, not a man to suffer tight weaklings. He may be a little nicer to Mason than he was to Jon, but not by much. With Mason in position, he's then taken by Mike, with a frisky fast fuck and then Jon by one as volatile.
Mason has cum again, but that doesn't stop the rest of the action. Jon's mouth is still itching for cock, and Tober's is still hard for it. However, it's a race to fuck for these guys, with Jon sitting and riding on Tober. Just watch Tober as he tries to control this position, roaring like a caged animal while Jon slides around on his dick. It's instant chemistry between Tober and anyone, but his favorite seems to be Jon. Jon cums still on Tober. Just from watching on the sidelines, Steve shoots on Mike's cock and then watches at eye level as Mike blows a whopper high-popper. Tober isn't exactly done with Jon. Even after Josh shoots, they still fuck, because The Big T isn't finished yet. When he's ready, he shoots and scores with another humdinger blast-off.
Proving that he's game for just about anything, goateed Tober gets major piss baths galore. His buddies have an inexhaustible amount of urine to unload and they coat his body with it. He hopes for some in the mouth from Mike, but what doesn't go down the gullet yellows his slightly hairy body deliciously.
Cole Ryan, a bushy-browed little brunet is up next for tryouts and he's a VIRGIN! He tells the director he's never been with a man or a woman, not so much as a blowjob or a dick touch. Does such a person still exist? And does such a person really lose his cherry on video? Cole's innocent face seems for real and he does kickboxing in real life and shows moves that prove practice. I guess that's where he has been getting his physical workouts. He gets himself hard and shows off a fine long dick. His body has benefited from his hobby, as it's exceptionally tight and lean. Studiously watching some provided porn, Cole reels off a pent-up cum-shot, doing so quietly, but with great intensity. Cole is now no longer a video virgin, though sex with another person is still illusive as the crew applauds him.
Back on the set, sex is about to happen again. The director calls "action" and it starts. Derrick has reedy Matthieu as his plaything, the two groping at each other's hard cocks as they mack. The latter shows off a thick uncut one, but he is quickly entranced by Derrick and sucks him generously. The cut patterns in his hair show a bit of danger in this boy (at least in his look), and his hurricane force sucking proves he goes after what he wants. He does a particularly good job devouring both of Derrick's balls at once and then returning to a forced deep-throat that allows him precious little time to breathe. Lurking in the shadows watching these two is security officer Keith Webb, one of the hunkiest manly guys porn has displayed. He is noticed by Derrick, who just encourages Matthieu to lap up even more before turning him over and spanking his ass, causing Keith to join. The guys take turns eating his ass, a tad hairy, and the energetic Derrick mixes in a blowjob on Keith while he's doing it. Keith, sporting his gloves as he works, really aims to open up Matthieu's ass, prying it wide apart and digging in his tongue and fingers in prep of something I can only assume is going to be major.
And it doesn't get more major than fisting! With the scariest ease, Keith slams a gloved hand into Matthieu's ass and punches away. The bottom can take a really hard fisting fuck, and with Keith's hands digging as far as hands can go, Matthieu is given every chance to show off his talents. Keith makes no pretense of niceties. This is deep-digging fisting at its best, both hands with fast agile speed. Derrick wants in on the action, so he drives in his hand, often at the same time as Keith. They are alternating, but there are moments when both seem to be in together. It's no problem for Matthieu, who remains very hard and uncomplaining throughout. In fact, he barely moans at Keith pile-drives in near his elbow! Derrick apes the big man with some heavy duty two-hand action, which is perfected after that by Keith. Matthieu's ass has taken a royal beating, but all three cum on him and all seem equally thrilled at the session. Keith leaves, but Derrick pisses away whatever is left in his dick for a few seconds before their scene fades out.
Nearby, Cole's dreams are coming true. Paired with massive inked blond Troy Moore, he finally gets to feel another cock, but even better, the obviously experienced Troy then wraps his lips around Cole's dick and sucks him. A virgin might explode at any second, which adds a neat tension to the scene, and Troy definitely exploits that, giving him the slowest most teasing blowjob, letting his tongue and lips touch every millimeter of Cole's dick. Cole's dick is obviously no problem for Troy's mouth, so he has plenty of time to try every trick he wants. It's an exquisite blowjob, so perfect for the moment. Innocent Cole, with encouragement off-camera, goes down on Troy. He hasn't done this before? He sure as hell looks like a pro! He licks at Troy with a very eager mouth, from the tip down to the balls, and able to gobble down a sizeable amount of the thick curved cock when it's in his mouth. The kid has been dripping pre-cum as far back as the kissing, and it keeps going when Troy sticks a tongue into his ass. Cole audibly gasps here and wears a giant smile. It seems that this felt excellent! Troy fits Cole with a condom and lets the kid fuck him. Again, Cole is a natural. He scoops his way into Troy, and he does so with jaunty potent thrusts. How he still doesn't cum after mere seconds, I really don't know, but instead he delivers an amiable wanton fuck that fits well with the others around it. It must be making Troy happy, because the cum blast he lets out is barely contained by the camera, shooting all the way up to his face in huge streams. Cole has a duplicate, with Troy behind him shoving a finger into his ass. If this is the first time, it seems Cole has quite a future ahead of him.
A quarter of a century after his original "Closed Set," Joe Gage has proven that his imagination knows no bounds. In just this film alone, he swings from a deflowered virgin to fisting! Twinks to bears. Pleasure to punishment. It's as if Gage wants to encapsulate every kind of porn in one flick. Okay, there are no romantic strings and no dialogue, but sex-wise, I think all of the bases are covered, and covered as only he can do it. The entire cast is a dream, from the tension of boyish Cole Ryan to the explosive experience of Tober Brandt, they are all flawless, all in on the mood and all rapaciously read. Thank you Joe Gage, for opening up this closed set to all of us.
DVD features: Chapters; trailers ("Alabama Takedown," "Gale Force: Mens Room II," "110° in Tucson," "Back to Barstow" and "Mens Room"); cum-shots chapter; music image gallery; interviews; photo sessions, additional footage (Tom Lazzari and Lee Raleigh in one, and Mike Grant fucking Cole Ryan in the middle of the group scene, which leads into further group action); and no regional coding.
A DVD Review by Brent Blue
On those rare occasions when director Joe Gage adds another entry to his limited Closed Set series, the event must be noted, for it provides another generation of viewers the opportunity to discover what was originally a ground-breaking cinéma vérité approach to sex films. This latest edition is entitled Closed Set, Titan Stage One.
Long before cinéma verité became better known as Reality TV, the first installment of Closed Set was released in 1980, and it appeared to document real men having real sex in real time for real cameras, and this departure from creating any fictional illusion about the sexplay was revolutionary.
This Closed Set opens in black-and-white documentary style as it follows a hunky young cameraman (newcomer Mason Wyler) from his trailer park home to the sound stages of Titan Media Studios and a heavy iron door on which is posted this sign: "CLOSED SET. Talent and crew only beyond this point." Once he steps through it, the footage turns to vibrant color, and we know, for sure, that we are no longer in Kansas.
As Wyler prepares his camera for taping, two performers (a grizzled Richard Locke look-alike, Hunt Parker, and a sleek brunet dynamo, Derrick Hanson) find their way into the remains of a tearoom set and get things going. They are soon joined by bearded Tom Lazzari, videocam in one hand, his own hard dick in the other. Hanson is a superlative cocksucker, and the scene pulsates with ineffable images of him wolfing down the two cocks coming at him through opposing glory holes. All three deliver major money shots, but Hanson's sailing spirals of spunk are the best.
In no time, the action shifts to another corner of the closed set where Lee Raleigh, a redhead whose arms are completely covered with wrist-to-shoulder tattoos, is trying out for a role in an upcoming production by demonstrating his extensive oral skills on an anonymous cock whose owner we never see. Later, back on the set, he is thrown into the mix with Parker, Hanson and Lazzari from the first scene, and though all of them keep their dicks and orifices busy, it is Hanson (topping Parker) who maintains the viewer's primary attention. He is a dynamite performer.
At another set of tryouts, goateed Josh West and crewcut Steve Trevor, who bears an uncanny resemblance to Woody Harrelson, chat with the off-camera Gage, jack off themselves and each other, and deliver strong money shots before the action moves back to the set. There, they plunge into a bout of three-way play with chestnut-haired Mike Stern. By now, videographer Wyler has gotten his camera working, and the scene nicely crosscuts between the full-throated action by all three men of the menage and the effect they are having on the good-looking, well-defined Wyler, whose curved, uncut erection is a sight to behold. A promising performer, Wyler is exceedingly cameragenic but not yet totally comfortable performing onscreen sex.
In time, the West-Trevor-Stern threeway is replaced by another that includes dark, hairy Jon Galt, balding brunet Mike Grant, and a big teddy bear of a man, Tober Brandt. Their rough and tumble interaction is as much a boxing match as it is a suck-and-fuckfest. Wyler tries his best to join in but remains largely peripheral as the three older men seem to prefer punching and slugging each other -- and proving they can take it as well as dish it out. In time, Brandt, Grant and Galt do get around to fucking Wyler, though all seem more interested in each other than in the long-legged bottom boy. The scene includes several other couplings and configurations, and ends with a pair of piss scenes in which Brandt is soaked down.
The final tryout introduces a pale-skinned, raven-haired kickboxing instructor named Cole Ryan, who claims to be a virgin. (This is either a magnificent illusion or a case where truth is stranger than fiction. Decide for yourself.) Ryan seems both open and comfortable with his virginity during the interview, and he subsequently brings himself off with a practiced hand. Then he is moved onto the closed set, where Hanson is back, busily fueling a fisting three-way that includes Matthieu Paris, one of the more remarkable receptacles around today, and Keith Webb, a confident top man in cop's uniform. This specialty act includes punch fucking, double-fisting and several insertions of near-elbow depth. All eventually climax, but again, Hanson's is best.
On the set, virgin-in-waiting Ryan has been paired with well-built, good-looking dirty blond Troy Moore, who warms him up with gentle kisses. Soon both are erect, their dicks dueling as they press together in a firm embrace. Moore is the first to go down, gently easing into the oral action but eventually deep-throating his partner. The camera captures each new sensation that crosses Ryan's face during his first blow job and then follows him as he kneels to take his turn at cocksucking. He gives good head, frequently looking up for approval, his cock twitching and spewing precum throughout. He especially seems to enjoy being rimmed, and he pays rapt attention when Moore rubbers him up. After a cautious entry, Ryan slides instinctually into Moore's ass and fucks as if he had been doing it all his life. Both deliver endlessly copious pop shots, leaving the viewer to ponder whether he has seen a real virgin deflowered onscreen or only an illusion thereof.
In the years since the first Closed Set, Gage's techniques have spawned a vast number of descendants, including Titan's hugely popular Manplay series. In fact, the new Closed Set could pass for a Manplay, except for the more seasoned cast members, the screenplay credit and the sure hand of director Gage, who knows that the greatest illusion he can create is to convince the viewer that there is no illusion at all.
- Jerry Douglas
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