Gay Essential Films To Watch, Nighthawks

In Nighthawks, set in 1970s London, Jim (Ken Robertson) enters a discotheque; He goes to the bar and orders a drink.  Looking around the darkly lit club reveals a club full of men bumping and grinding to disco with their shirts off. Jim leads a double life as a model geography teacher by day, while cruising London bars and clubs at night, looking for Mr Right and who ever catches his eye.

This is the life of a gay man (pre-AIDS), who does not flaunt his homosexuality but is certainly discreet about it. His colleagues and close friend Judy (Rachel Nicholas James) assumes that he is straight.  Unhappily married, when Jim refers to a lover as a “he” Judy reveals her disappointment and surprise.  His relationships are frequent and lacking substance.  By day Jim’s routine is made up of class work prep, intense discussions with his students before he eventually comes out to his students when taunted for his rumoured homosexuality.





“Truly a classic… Ken Robertson portrays Jim, a gay teacher whose compulsive odyssey through London’s bar scene propels him toward a confrontation with his students. But writers/directors Ron Peck and Paul Hallam have created a character that transcends urban stereotypes and ascends to the universal. Long, pointed collars, bell-bottom trousers, and sideburns come straight from the disco archives.”
   San Francisco Examiner

Nighthawks suggests that the pursuit of sex is almost a byproduct for the real search – that for acceptance and, fundamentally, companionship.”
The Guardian

“The overwhelming feeling when watching Nighthawks is that despite the world changing a lot since the late 70s, many of the issues faced by gay men remain the same.”
Big Gay Picture Show

Did You Know?

Ron Peck and Paul Hallam raised funds for their groundbreaking feature debut Nighthawks, relying in part on confidential gifts from gay public figures. Spanning five years in the making, the duo assembled gay men to discuss their life stories, their feedback became the film’s script. Review our Gay Themed Films Here

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Alexander Ryll
Launched in June 2014, Gay Essential is the world’s largest gay themed film blog promoting new and rare features. I am helped by some amazing writers and we also cover film festivals in the UK and USA. We are 100% independent, without advertising or funding by film distributors. Help to keep Gay Essential independent by purchasing our merchandise GET (Gay Essential Tees)
Alexander Ryll
- 8 hours ago
Alexander Ryll
Alexander Ryll