Sunday , February 28 2021

The striking life of the most famous gay porn star in Israel – Life & Culture



In an indoor room in a dark club there are two young men in work monkeys. They are handsome and muscular. While waiting to go on stage, great sounds and electronic music are clearly heard in the room. While they sit on each other on a sofa, they participate in the conversation. Apparently, the two were known before: "Are you still living in Barcelona?" Ask the other. "Still working on porn?" The second man replies: "No, last year, my sister got the cancer, she could do nothing." "Are you doing right now?" Asked the first man. "She died in February."

While this update and consolation is done, the two are also dedicated to something else. As part of the preparation of the show that is about to begin, a live sexual act on the stage of the club, are handling their sorrows, with the aim of creating and maintaining an erection. There is nothing erotic about it, it is purely mechanical, almost totally accidental. It is not a sensual gesture, it seemed to generate pleasure, but more like the polishing of a tool, with a consolation of a hand, with blows of fluttering and other fruits. The dissonance and the dissociation between their actions and their attitudes leave the viewer distant.

The first scene of "Jonathan Agassi Saved My Life", a new documentary film by Tomer Heymann, leaves no room for doubt. Anyone who reads a description of the film, which follows a decade in the life of Israeli actress Jonathan Agassi, but who expects a bit of refinement or concealment, will be disappointed. "Jonathan Agassi", like the man himself, does not come around the bush or talk to the public. The film features a certain world and a person within it, in layers and full of contradictions. Thus, the reality and its axioms about allowed and prohibited, good and bad are constantly questioned in this film. A moment shows things through the eyes of the movie's star and then reflected through the director's eye and then always descending through the world of prostitution and drugs until the final blow.


Lucas's entertainment

"The first time I saw the movie, I could not say any sound. The second time, I thought I could react and speak, but I started crying," says Agassi.

Is it hard to see with someone else's eyes, someone who presents fractures and chins in the story that talked about a person who has found happiness and is at the top of the world?

"The movie is not difficult for me, I do not see it again and experience the difficult period that happened. Now, when I look back in that decade, it really was a bit of a story, but I did not know until I saw the movie. He finds out about the movie that Tomer thought about doing about me, but nobody imagined, no one could imagine the way I described it, what would be such a sad documentary. "

Maybe because it contains things you did not see directly, that you did not call by name, what did Tomer do?


Amnon Sinai

"Yes, that is possible."

For three months, the movie has been playing in local cinemas in packaged halls, accompanied by barely publicity and no means. Last summer he received an award for the best documentary and edition award at the Jerusalem Film Festival. At the time, he received exultant reviews, but most remained below the radar. This should change from November 11, when the projection will begin as an expanded series on Channel 8, which has been one of the founders of the movie since its inception. (Agassi, her mother and two brothers also appeared in a previous series of the Heymann brothers, "Families", which was transmitted by Channel 8 in 2013). A few days later, he will compete for the best film award at the IDFA movie documentary festival in Amsterdam. This is a long enough time for your star to get used to the exposure, and not that exposure was never a problem for him.

"History begins on the way to porn"

Jonathan Langer, 34, was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Holon. It would be the first to be described as exhibitionist. They are not his appearances in pornographic films, nor the facility that exposes his body to him (nor even in scenes of the film in which it is not "in good condition", the half-naked way). It seems that it has been documented since he found out about himself. Your personal computer contains, as shown in the movie, thousands of photos and video clips, from childhood onwards, even before it was reinvented as Jonathan Agassi.

Her parents divorced when she was six months old and her relationships with her father were almost non-existent. Her mother, Anna, on the contrary, played a key role in her life and did in the movie. Some images of the film seem to be allusions to a Pieta tablet, with the mother welcoming her tortured son, full of unconditional love for him, even when using legends and heels of needles. Anna and Jonathan are currently living together in a small department in the south of Tel Aviv. The film can follow Jonathan through the twists of life, but is focused primarily on his relationship with his mother and how he manages to be the rock in his life devastated by the wind. It's a life that always seems to be stormy, even when I did not know it.

"History begins on the way to porn," he says, turning on a cigar. "He was a delicate and feminine boy. I only had friends, never young, was a type of gay boy," he says with a smile. "I always exhibited sexuality. There was a store in Sheinkin Street for accessories, such as fur bags. I was 14 years old, with thin eyebrows, and I liked to shop there. I had many social problems, being so small. School was a routine. It happened every day, but I got back. I do not know how to describe that period. "

We will go back to that period and what happened then, which can affect their sexual maturation and their outward display of sexuality at an early age.

Langer lost virginity at age 14, an elderly man who told him he had closed his eyes and pretended he was a woman. What he thought was a man. A year or two later, he relates, he left the closet openly, although he says: "I've never been in a closet and I've always gone to the extreme."

Never finished middle school, completing only 10 years of schooling. Instead, he studied makeup and hairdressing and worked in a store that was part of a great makeup chain, becoming his fashion designer fashionist. Those were quiet years. He rented a room with another man and surpassed his income on weekends working in a sex shop near the old bus terminal in Tel Aviv.


Ethan Tal

"It was a straight store, with peep shows, the most elegant thing you can get. I had a long time to kill the weekends, which is when I got interested in porn. Those were the years that showed me more handsome, with a good body and a good look. " He told him that he did not use pornography until he worked at the store, which also coincided with him and his divided couple, when Langer was 23 years old.

"When I was working in the store, I would take DVD and watch the functions behind the scenes. They have a camera, they have food and people who meet all their needs. All it takes is to rest and wait for the next scene." Ría. "When my Couple and I leave, I returned to my mother in Holon and I was in a confused state. One day I saw an online advertisement looking for porn stars. It was not a great company, but I could understand that there was something there. "

He began to request hearings. At the same time, as fate would do, Michael Lucas, fervent Zionist, director and owner of Lucas Entertainment, one of the largest pornographic companies in the US. U., He came to Israel to direct a movie starring local men. Langer jumped to the opportunity, and quickly they offered a role to him. Although filming was still under way, even before Israel's men became one of the most profitable features for gay pornography, it was signed by two more productions.


REUTERS

At this time the name of "Jonathan Agassi" was born, an alter ego that he describes in the current movie as a superhero, a character who helps him, who is always at his side. Jonathan Agassi has become a star almost at night. From a boy from Holon who has almost never left the country, Langer has become a man of the world, moving around, acquainted with all the airports in the world. He still describes this period as the happiest of his life.

"For me, sex has always been something for free," he says, crossing his legs on the couch. "Sexually speaking never seemed to be forbidden, the body is something good and beautiful and I always felt comfortable with the nakedness. Porn helps me like a glove." But when he told his mother about his new call, she had a predictable reaction, he says: "What in the world are you doing?" And so on. The thing is that they are good to persuade people and I could also convince her. I was in a contract that prohibited the use of drugs, and was not in that world anymore Like an innocent child, it seemed organized and delighted, with people who protected him and seeing that he did not get messed up. "

As a model apartment in Milan.

"Exactly. That's what it might look like."

Pornography, however, and this may be the reason why Agassi was appropriate, it was a gateway to dive into the depths. And it seems that the persuasive Agassi happened to deceive both him and those who surround him for a long period. Even when it should be clear that the life he was selling was really about to collapse around him, the truth went a long way to penetrate the wall he built himself.

"I can say today that there were many situations in which I could say that I was naive. I really saw things like this and when I believe in something I will do everything for people to see things that way. At the end of the movie, I say that everything that They fought, everything that people told me about what he was doing, the things he did not want to hear, everything happened. I fell, as they told me. I believed so much and wanted things so badly that I did not see it coming. "

Maybe there was something inside you that longed for it?

"Absolutely. I loved it a lot. Exhibitionism is the word that best describes me."

Why not go through a legitimate performance?

"I never wanted to. Maybe I became a model that would work, but I think it would get to the same place at the end. This is what I think."

The combination of your character, lots of money and a lot of temptation would take you to the same place?


Itay Azrieli

"Yes, in the same place. It's not the porn that took me there, it's the associated lifestyle. A lot of free time, a lot of money, around the world, and escort is just one of the many steps on the way down. "

A trip with a customer & # 39;

Ten years is the time for a slide that ends up collapsing. The young Agassi was at the top of the world. He had an exclusive contract with Lucas Entertainment, and became a busy actor that swept through thousands of dollars per movie. Along with the appearances of cinema, it began to act in shows of sex in direct. Initially, they were conferences of the sex industry, who try to maintain an air of dignity and order. Then he appeared at sex parties in clubs in Israel and abroad. Eventually, after refusing offers for a long time, he also started working as a companion. I told her sister in the movie that when she says "a trip with a client", that is what she means, adding she is not a prostitute, more like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman.

A personal crisis caused further deterioration. He decided to move to Berlin, where he embarked, perhaps unconsciously, on a trip of self-destruction. "Drugs and sex are abundant and available in Berlin, but they took me two to three years before I became a daily user. I had a beautiful apartment in Berlin. I worked hard and people recognized me on the street and turned my head as I walked" .

After two years, however, things started to go down. "I spent taking medications once a month to use them on weekends, at parties, and then it would start the weekend on Thursday and it would end on Wednesday, sleep one night and start over again. I was not afraid of anything, I just wanted to put everything I could. I was sure that death was next.

"I started with coke and that was a fairly quiet period, doing it 2-3 times a week. I still traveled a lot for the outbreaks and performances. My career was doing well."

On one of his trips, Agassi tried crystal metallization, "although I knew the drug and what he did and that it is dangerous." I was hooked right away.

There were no warning signs? Are there no alarm bells in your head?


Lucas's entertainment

"All the warnings were there. I knew that people were killed by hard drugs in the clubs, I knew I did not listen. My character is always going beyond the limits. I have no fears. The extreme gives me back, I'm not afraid" .

From that moment on, his life was moved by drinking GHB, a muscle relaxant that, in high doses, is used as a "rape drug", which consumes the glass metal ("you become an animal without inhibition or fear"). and mass appeal to prostitution. On a routine day, Agassi would not have less than five clients, but sometimes it was more than 12. He estimates that his income exceeded one million shekels ($ 270,000) in those years. Sometimes, he would make 3,000 shekels in one day. "But I did not know or I did it the next day. I was surrounded by people like me and it seemed normal that the day revolves around sex and drugs."

This deterioration is slowly and gradually shown in the film and is almost imperceptible. Even today, it is difficult to drill the shell of Agassi. If during the first part of the movie the viewer asks himself if he is looking for a truly happy prostitute and that he must renounce the old notions about the immorality of prostitution, only in the second half it is clear that there is no such thing as a happy sex worker who does not suffer repercussions serious physical and mental.

"Everything seemed beautiful and good"

Until today, it is difficult to convince Agassi of this, two years after he stopped, after surgery, he intended to repair tears in his body caused by sex with men and his porn job and after a period of recovery of months he spent at home her mother In episode four of the television show (though not included in the movie version), we see Agassi preparing for a new show. He will be on a stage, surrounded by thorns, and will please any anonymous sexual organ pushed in his way. It is a totally dark, cruel scene and Agassi seems somebody deprived of his humanity through his self-denial and self-destruction, exploited as a sex girl for multitudes of users who touch him and themselves. He is so confused that his eyes shine when he talks about the new work: "People respected and it was good to me but quickly it became work. I would wake up, respond to a call and say where I needed to go. I would not call it prostitution, it seemed like any other work. "

But you needed Viagra beforehand, did you take drugs and did with your body, satisfying at least five men per day?

"I did not see the negative impact on my body and mind. Until this day I do not see it. I think many negative things did not come from the listener."

There's a strange mix in you, Jonathan. On the one hand, he has experienced the lowest things in life, really dark aspects, but he has a terrible naivete about people and their intentions, what they see in you and what purpose they use and, above all, what does all this. you

"You know, I do not think I never thought what I was doing. I did not see it. I did not see self-destruction even when it was obvious. My mother says I've never heard my body. Now it's different, I try to listen. So I was deeply ecstatic and the truth is that, until now, I see that period and I do not see it as a difficult one. I do not see it as destructive. "

Jonathan, you were very loud all the time.

"This is true, but I have the proof that there are happy prostitutes."

He had to be drugged all the time to succeed.

"I wanted to be drugged".

Could you get to that situation without being drugs all the time?

"I think so, but I can not separate it, since it was a whole package: porn, escort, drugs. It all seemed beautiful and good. I did not feel it was in a forbidden or bad place. I never saw escort like a dark place He did things really bad, but it was also good. If you were a regular person and not a user, many things would be different or would not have happened, but I did not. "

The father and his German partner

The things that appeared under the surface arise in the film in uncontrollable explosions. These are moments that Agassi has not yet seen. Sometimes he comes to projections and keeps brief conversations with the public (who responds with relief by seeing him healthy, smiling, alive). In a recent show on Saturday night, he avoided watching an external monitor showing the people who were waiting for what the movie was and how long he was. Then he enters the auditorium with a smile, but can not stand his sight rolling in the street, lying in a car and lamenting a psychotic attack. It happens during the film when it is drugged and when the subject of its relations with its father and the family history arises.

This problem seems to be a bleeding pain that nobody has set, surely not the own Agassi. When his elder brother was 13 years old and was almost 12 years old, both were sent to Hamburg to visit his father and his German partner. This was almost the first meeting between them, and he explains – at least in the eyes of Heymann – and although Agassi does not see it like that, much of what happened in the life of his son. The father seemed to listen to his female son, he scolded and mocked him. He called him "homo" and pressured him to have sex with his adult female partner (father). Agassi, an 11 year old boy, turns out to be the victim of sexual harm.

"I've never seen it as a traumatic thing. I understand today that it was sexual harassment. I still do not understand how my father did not see it. Today I think it should not have happened. Perhaps my salvation was that it was not part of my conscience. My subconscious was always clinging, it was in some way related to my father, but we never carried it on, I did not think he explained things. Maybe that's good. "

As a defense mechanism?


Mari Laukkanen

"Yes. When we shot the movie and my father's whole theme appeared, it was like scratching a wound he did not know existed. Tomer took him there and finally everything was buried there. Do you think I'm reprimanding him?"

Do not you do it

"I think that after taking Tomer to my story, after I showed him photos of this event with that German woman, only then came into my conscience. Only then did I see him through the eyes of an adult. Until then, I told myself a story as if It was a fun experience and everything that worried me was a strap that I bought then. "

You told yourself a story in which it was a fun event, but in fact it was something painful?

"Yes, I'm starting to think about it. I know you can wait, but I do not hate my father. I even love you. I do not feel traumatized because of it, I'm not angry because it's over and I'm not a disgrace whose life has collapsed. I'm a pessimist. They're immune, things go through me. "

There is a heartbreaking moment, where someone seems to understand that he was deceived, that his father deceived him.

"It ended with a cold rest. The hug that I give it without looking at it again, so it ended. A year later I returned to Berlin, we were and things were fine. My problem with him, with Raviv, is not how he was Father, but he did not help me to live when I was in Berlin. He had the opportunity to repair our history and that did not happen. I'm more concerned about it than the sexual harassment I experienced when I was 11 or 12. "


Adi Reis

There is also the story of the gay community and what the movie says about it, and the responses, sometimes harsh, people have after watching the movie. What is represented is a culture of clubs and drugs, sex, for money or without restrictions; The reflection that the film places before the community is not an image of a society of people working in high technology, twins born through subrogation.

"I do not want to generalize," Agassi says, illuminating another cigar. "I do not think the movie says anything about homosexuals, just about some parts of this community. Perhaps great segments. It's a community that does drugs, what parts, what is deep in sex. We are a community of men, that's part of it. I hope I do not say it too dark, I did not want the community to portray that way. "

You said that at the age of 15 or 16 you were already getting sex offers for money.

"At the age of 15, I opened a profile in a dating site for homosexuals, and I started receiving offers. When that age obviously you get offers from older men who offer you your support." All my friends offered money to An early age, I do not think it was special. As soon as I joined the LGBT community, I started getting sex offers for money. Homosexuals are mistaken and value if you are young, if you are handsome, if you have a large penis. Unfortunately, this is something on which the community is based. I am worried that people will think that I am destroying the community, but it is a large part of what seems, many drugs and sex, a thin line between sexual freedom and abandonment. It is a world managed by men. "

Sex as power

There is something complex and heart-wrenching in the honesty with which Agassi is expressed. He smiles and tends to minimize the impact of his lost decade. He is charismatic and sweet in a way that makes it difficult to do it towards reality. He will reject the descriptions of himself as a victim of the sex industry, although it fits into the prototype. There is a sobriety in his attitude towards sex and relationships (in an inactive scene in the film, he declares that he does not need a partner or love, since he can ask his clients to embrace him at night), and in his desire for the first time in years of having a relationship. At the end of our talk, he says that last year was the least sexual he had. "I came back from someone whose life was constantly turning around sex in someone who did not give him the central role he had. My life revolved around sex. She went mad at home looking for her. But during the last year I only had sex two Sometimes I'm trying to turn it into something more human. "

Sex for you was like your super-power for a long time. It was where he was safe and secure, with the body and the penis, the fantasies, he trusted that he had something to give.

"It was this way. I do not think it's like this today. I do not think sex is what I can give, what is my strong suit. I still have not found what it is. I still do not know what I can give the world, I'm still looking for. I really want the movie to take me to the educational work, so that the community changes its vision of drugs. I want to know that I have the experience and the wisdom to do it and what happened to me is what I can give to the world. I used to give my body without thinking of my soul. Now I'm not here, and I think a lot about what I can depend on. I'm sure I'll find it. I'm in a good place now. The movie put the puzzle together for me. There are many things I did not remember. If you could analyze them as they were happening, you might not get out of it.

What would you like to happen?

"I really want kids, but I'm sorry I'm moving away because it's a long and difficult process, financially difficult. I am not very optimistic about it. I will try to find myself in the near future. I work in a kiosk, but it's not forever. Now everything is temporary. And I do not know the direction to go in. Maybe I'm going back to makeup and hairdressing. I'm looking for myself, but mentally I'm calm. I've always been very impulsive. I would do everything I could think of. I think that's happened. I try to plan ahead. and do things more intelligently. "


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