Fred Halsted Double-Feature

Fred Halsted (July 20, 1941 – May 9, 1989) was an actor, director, and early innovator of the hard-core gay feature. His films have been heavily censored and rarely exhibited outside of a rare cinematheque or museum screening. So we are fortunate to be able to screen two of Fred Halsted’s films, LA Plays Itself & Sextool, recently restored by Altered Innocence.

Typical of Fred Halsted’s filmography, both films are loosely, non-narrative with a focus on scenes of rough, sadomasochistic sex. At there core, these films are an assault on everything wholesome about an idealized American Culture. Here, Halsted takes viewers into a dark and subversive side of L.A. These films are the earliest to show fisting on screen.

CONTENT WARNING: Depictions of non-consensual BDSM.

9:00 pm PDT – Saturday, September 11 – Grand Illusion Cinema – Tickets

LA PLAYS ITSELF (United States, 1972,55 min)


LA PLAYS ITSELF opens on a shot of the “Los Angeles City Limits” sign. It then cuts to Fred Halsted taking a walk in the forest and coming upon a man sunning himself in the nude. They briefly talk and end up having passionate sex in the wilderness only to be interrupted by bulldozers destroying the wildlife area in order to build a new suburb. The film suddenly switches to inner city Los Angeles as Halsted and a man from Texas discuss in voice over the problems with modern society and the dishonesty of most people.

SEXTOOL (United States, 1975, 60 min)


The underground world of Los Angeles – aggressive leather men, cock-hungry sailors, drag queens, and more.

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