You Won’t Expect Anything in This Film
Now I know this may be a huge stretch for some of you. Maybe you don’t believe me. However, I urge you to at least hear me out a bit here. Tickled is a 2016 documentary directed by David Farrier a New Zealand journalist who is known for covering popculture stories. Things get interesting (and more than a little weird/mysterious) when he decides to look into the bizarre world of competitive tickling. Trust me when I say, you won’t expect the twists and turns this (100% real mind you) documentary takes as it uncovers a shocking secret.
Big claims, right? I know. Before I go any further I’m going to provide the trailer and a link to rent/purchase the film below. Check out the trailer and please just watch the film. It’s that good! Keeping in line with the creator’s wishes for anyone who reviews the film, I will not be spoiling any aspect of this movie at all. After the trailer and such, I will talk briefly about the follow-up film that is available free (it’s short, like twenty minutes) and the overall experience with both. You should pretty much already know my thoughts though.
If you would like to rent or purchase the film you can do so here
The trailer doesn’t exaggerate anything. As I’ve mentioned, it shows the film going from a fairly light-hearted fun time to an almost horror tone diving deep into conspiracy. You won’t be able to predict all the twists and turns the film will provide you. The most important aspect of the film is in its final scene. Despite everything, “Jane” the villain of the film, is still painted as a person. It is a bit hard to explain why this is so important without spoiling things but trust me when I say this film is more than worth your time and money.
After the film concluded there is still some stuff that hasn’t been granted closure. For that you’ll need to view the follow-up film The Tickle King. Don’t worry though, that is free and fairly short. Heavy spoilers here so please do not view or read beyond this point if you have not yet seen the original film. I’ll still be here and I can wait.
A bizarre twist and conclusion to ‘Tickled’
During the film’s original screenings at the Sundance Film Festival, David D’Amato himself shows up. He even likes the film to some extent! Here he is even offered the chance to tell his side of the story. This short video is really interesting and if Tickled should ever release on DVD, this should really be included.
Shortly after, Mr. D’Amato died. Originally the circumstances of his death were unclear but it was eventually revealed that he died of a heart attack. Some people doubted that he was actually dead (after all, with so much money it would not be hard to fake one’s own death) but it has been confirmed by multiple sources that he is without a doubt dead.
While he did a lot of truly horrible things to people, I can’t help but feel a bit sorry for the guy. He clearly grew up with problems and was left a broken man. Enabled by his money his power fantasy and tickle fetish were beyond what I had expected this film to even come close to exploring. He provided a great deal of entertainment as well as inviting a discussion about these types of issues.
I doubt I need to repeat myself, but I found this weird little movie about “competitive endurance tickling” to be enthralling and immensely entertaining. The material is presented in a tasteful and human way. By far the best documentary I’ve seen to date.
Did I convince you to see Tickled? Let me know your full thoughts in the comments below. If you enjoyed the article consider throwing a few bucks my way via Ko-fi; I’d greatly appreciate it! As always, thanks for reading and I hope to see you back here at Jon Spencer Reviews again soon.