When asked of how HipBeat was inspired, director Samuel Kay Forrest said, “HipBeat is based on true events from my sibling’s experiences as well as myself and friends. It is a fictional narrative scripted film that has moments of realism because we really shot at protests in the film and trains. Everything else in the film was closed set locations except for the protests and train sequences. It was inspired by the films of Jean Luc Goddard, John Cassevetees, Sidney Lumet and very early Martin Scorsese. We wanted to capture the realism in the streets of Berlin. Where they blended real life into their films.”
This is the story of Angus, or Angy, whose life is a mix of violent political activism and a search for love and belonging within Berlin’s queer community. He’s played by Forrest, who also wrote and directed this movie.
Despite falling for Angie — a rich girl from a family that would never accept Angy, not like he would want them to — his time in Berlin is one of experimentation, not only as he rails against the far right, but as he explores his own fluid gender and sexuality. Yet the man who wants equality barely treats his lovers the same way.
HipBeat is now playing select theaters, such as Arena Cinelounge in Los Angeles. It’s an intriguing story that is very of our time.