Johns (film)

johns is a 1996 film starring David Arquette and Lukas Haas. They portray hustlers who work Santa Monica Boulevard. The title refers both to the slang term for a sex client and to several characters in the film named John (including Arquette's).

johns was one of several films dealing with this subject matter that were released in 1996. Others included Skin & Bone (in which Arquette had a cameo as a client) and Hustler White.

Plot summary

It's Christmas Eve and John (Arquette) is asleep in a Los Angeles park. He awakens as someone is stealing his shoes, in which he keeps his money. He chases the thief but can't catch him. John is angered not only because those are his "lucky" sneakers but because he's trying to accumulate enough money for an overnight stay in a fancy hotel to celebrate his birthday, which is also Christmas. Each time John puts any money together, either by turning a trick, robbing the house of one of his regular "dates" or stealing from potential clients, it's taken from him either by robbery or in payback for a drug deal where he burned the dealer.

Meanwhile, Donner (Haas), a fellow hustler who's new to the streets and has fallen in love with John, tries to convince John to go with him to Branson, Missouri. Donner has a relative who runs a theme park there who can get them jobs. John is initially resistant to the idea but after some particularly bad experiences agrees to go.

John and Donner have enough money for two bus tickets to Branson but John takes one last "date" to earn money for expenses. After their sexual encounter at a motel, however, John's "date" turns violent, beating John unmercifully.

Donner goes in search of John and finds him at the motel. Donner brings John back to his apartment and tearfully confesses that he's the one who stole John's sneakers and money in a desperate attempt to persuade John to leave town with him. It's not explicitly stated but John presumably dies from his injuries. It's unclear whether John died at the motel, on the way to Donner's or at Donner's.

The next morning, Donner dons John's lucky sneakers and boards the bus for Branson.

Awards and nominations

San Sebastián International Film Festival Best New Director - Scott Silver (1996)

DVD release

johns was released on Region 1 DVD on February 29, 2000.

External links

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