In Unhung Hero, his new, self-described "cockumentary," Patrick Moote admits that he's not well hung. But the guy has balls. After being rejected by his girlfriend for having a small penis, Moote, an actor and stand up comic in Los Angeles, literally travels around the world searching for a "cure" to his problem.
The result is an hilarious, yet ultimately sweet film by Moote's best bud Brian Spitz, who documents Moote's journey.
The "cockumentary" moniker was all Patrick," filmmaker Spitz told SF Weekly. "I came up with Unhung Hero."
Spitz's camera follows Moote home to Seattle, where a heartbroken Patrick tells his sympathetic mom that he's hung like a hamster. Naturally we wondered how it felt to discuss one's penis with a parent.
"Patrick had to do it," said Spitz. "He had to go there, it was uncomfortable, but rewarding. No one was hurt, and Patrick's mom shed tears at a screening. So did Patrick."
Moote still wonders on occasion if he should have made the film, even as he embraces the acclaim that's come his way via the film festival circuit. Ultimately, he came to realize making the film was the right thing to do. "Brian and I found something that would help me, and others, to accept ourselves for who we are," he said.
The journey to self-acceptance was "long and hard." At a stop here in the Bay Area, Moote chats with sex guru Carol Queen of Good Vibrations, who warns him against using penis enlargement pumps. They could damage -- and shorten -- the user's member.
"Your penis is your friend," Queen tells the anxious young man.
On a hill overlooking the City, porn star/performance artist Annie Sprinkle assures Moote that he's beautiful. "I think they're all beautiful," Sprinkle says, speaking of penises in general. "I think all trees are beautiful. They're all beautiful in their own way."
The boys travel around the world. In Korea, "the small penis capital of the world," Moote ponders surgery. He and Spitz are ultimately attacked inside a Korean bathhouse when the hidden cameras they brought in are discovered. In Taiwan, he meets a group of weight lifters: one of whom lifts several hundred pounds with his shlong! In Papal New Guinea, Moote considers allowing a witch doctor to inject his wanker with a mysterious enlargement fluid. At the 11th hour, he decides against the treatment.
Spitz reports that, for a film shot on a number of continents, the budget for Unhung Hero was surprisingly low.
"We spent a little chunk of money here, a little there," he said. "And people offered to help. In San Francisco we had four cameras running."
Ultimately, Moote was happy he made the film. "It was liberating for me, and for those I talk to," he said. "We had pitched a bunch of projects, and this is the one project people were interested in."
Moote says the film hasn't gotten him any acting gigs, nor has it's unusual subject hurt his career. "I'm just getting myself out there," he said. "This industry is hard to figure out, but I love the industry whatever I'm doing. Whether or not I'm making money hand over fist, I love storytelling. As long as I'm able to survive and do something that will have a positive effect on people, I'm good."
Look for Unhung Hero on DVD on November 26.