One of the most talked-about films at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, TICKLED begins with reporter David Farrier stumbling upon a bizarre “competitive endurance tickling” video online, wherein young men are paid to be tied up and tickled, and reaching out to request a story from the company. But the reply he receives is shocking—the sender mocks Farrier’s sexual orientation and threatens extreme legal action should he dig any deeper. So, like any good journalist confronted by a bully, he does just the opposite: he travels to the hidden tickling facilities in Los Angeles and uncovers a vast empire, known for harassing and harming the lives of those who protest their involvement in these films. The more he investigates, the stranger it gets, discovering secret identities and criminal activity. Discovering the truth becomes Farrier’s obsession, despite increasingly sinister threats and warnings. With humor and determination, Farrier and co-director Dylan Reeve summon up every resource available to get to the bottom of this tickling worm-hole. Reeve joins us for a conversation on the world of competitive tickling, the competitors and promoters involved in tickling as well as the litigious and threatening environment that making TICKLED has engendered.
Tickled opens on Friday, June 17 2016 at the Nuart Theatre in West Los Angeles and the Sunshine Cinema 5 in New York City
“Gunning to be the year’s strangest doc, ‘Tickled’ takes a Dantean descent into a shadowy netherworld as bizarre as the ones in ‘Eyes Wide Shut’ and J.G. Ballard’s ‘Crash.’” – Matt Prigge, Metro
“Tickled morphs from an offbeat caper to a disturbing exposé on the dangers of cyberbullying.” Nigel Smith, The Guardian
“In its genial, low-key way, the film … is a chilling account of cyberbullying, perpetrated on a disturbingly wide scale over many years.” – Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter