Strong Men Do Lie is an absurdist dark comedy satirising the idealism of T.V. consumerism. Abs and Steele, Arnold and Steve, are two strongmen whose exercises are so ridiculous that they must be true. Over 20 years, Arnold turned a prank on his best friend into the multi-million pound fitness empire of 1987. So when the beloved muscle men are exposed as fakes, they go on an incredible journey back to the top. Adverts, spider sex suits and impossible loads force the men to reassess the nature of strength and masculinity.
This film wishes to discuss the themes of self-improvement, modern masculinity and commercial deception. Taking influence from films such as, The Greasy Strangler, Pink Flamingos, Entertainment and Network. This film wants to take great delight in showing the disgusting in a beautiful light.
We are constantly bombarded with adverts, infomercials and lifestyle pieces. For years, these chunks of media have been influencing our identity, desire and self worth. Perfect bodies and happy lives have always seemed so easy on our screens. We are told that the only route to happiness is to follow the law of television and 3 easy payments of £17.95. This film is about the empty promises of protein shakes, exercise tapes and self-improvement. Whether it’s selfish or truly selfless, ultimately only you can decide your own fate.
Masculinity is undergoing an identity crisis and whilst I’m not an expert, I have certainly dabbled. Abs and Steele, our heroes, are grappling with the awkward angry beast of manliness. They have to MAN UP, whatever that means. Abs and Steele's journey discusses, what is expected of a man? Are we only strong by ripping ourselves apart? How do you admit a lie? And the hardest question for any man to be honest with, You alright mate?
The comedy between nurturing your fellow man and muscle rippling self hatred is something that resonates on a far deeper level than gender, time period or fitness preference. I think it's important that we should take time to laugh at everything around us, not just our own crippling insecurities.
Arnold/Abs - 33, Greasy slicked hair, fitness fraud.
A business man first and a friend second. No matter how hard he tries he has never been able to wash off his greasy persona. Deceptively unfit, he is a man always searching for the next opportunity for profit.He has been friends with Steve since they were ten, what originally started as a prank on his best friend has evolved into a multi-million pound fitness empire. He is very aware of his position as a snake oil salesman, it’s his right to profit off the unwashed masses.
Steve/Steele - 33, A mullet, moustache and thoroughly misled.
A kind man, who’s own bullying inspired him to be the hero he dreamed off. Soft in the head and gut, he’s never been a smart man. But over the years he’s grown from wimp to an out of shape giant. He believes that it’s all thanks to Arnold’s amazing fitness regime. For 2 decades he has been licking batteries and eating pennies to power his impossibly stupid exercises. He now wants to save the world by inspiring people to follow his partner’s route to perfect fitness.
Tanya - she’s been 29 for two decades now. She’s a shark in a power suit.
A careful construct of hairspray and shoulder pads disguise a rage for the imperfect and ugly. She prides herself on providing the ultimate guide for the modern ideal life and she will happily crush anything that does not fit. Her desire and success come from a doubt in herself that she keeps well hidden.
Mr. Hammond - 65. This unnerving man has been watching the duo train since they were young lads.
He has personally helped shape them into the supple young men they’ve become. He has offered guidance for the boys from his secluded caravan that spurred them on to create their empire, although through inspiration or disgust it remains unclear.
Our crack team of filmmakers have worked on countless productions both professionally and for the passion.
The team is diverse, excited and ready to create the oddest world committed to cathode in 16 years.
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Our film not only aims to invite you in to the fraudulent world of Abs & Steele, it aims to take you back in to a time when gaudy textiles, salmon pastels and Memphis furniture were commonplace.
In order to design the world of our film, we want to use the funds raised to create an 80s aesthetic, budgeting to include the build of a studio set for a morning talk show and the juxtaposed homes in which our protagonists reside. Think TV-am meets Blind Date – it may be a mishmash of fabric and furniture, but it’s the perfect backdrop to Tanya’s presenting style.
Our absurd vision's charismatic characters need the calibre of actors that can disgust and compel with equal vigor. These kind of specialists are hard to find and harder to trick into the back of the van. The money will help us with the standard kidnapping equipment and if that fails, we will try to pay them to act.
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