“The Tanti Man”
A Sexy Gay Summer that Was
Tanti Man is a term derived from French Creole/Caribbean term for an effeminate man and/or homosexual. The film looks back at the 70’s and 80’s and does so in a montage of images and reminiscences of filmmaker Bobby Abate’s youth. He shares his memories of a seaside town to when things got sexy with another young man.
Abate says that the film is “A summer memoir of my love affair with Salisbury Beach and a strange and charming drifter. When I lived in Boston, I was obsessed with a beach town on the north shore of Massachusetts complete neon pizza shacks, a run-down amusement park, pin ball machines, and a roller skating rink collapsed into the ocean. Populated by colorful weirdos and misfits, I felt more at home here then I did in Boston — it was a place for those who somehow felt protected amongst the crumbling facades and faded memories. At the time, I felt most comfortable in tenuous spaces and in fleeting encounters with unavailable men.”
Included are entries from Abate’s journal of his teen years and we see the melodrama and self-destructiveness that he went through.