The Prince begins and ends with a crime of passion. Between these bookends is the story of a young man discovering his sexuality, finding love, learning to love, and finally becoming the person that he knew he was all along.
Jaime is sent to prison for killing the man that he has secretly desired. Upon his arrival, he is immediately the object of fascination by “The Stallion”, an older man that has assumed the dominant “alpha male” position within the confines of a cell that is shared between multiple prisoners. A strong bond soon develops between the two men as they come to rely on one another not just for companionship but deep emotional love.
By balancing scenes of sex, brutality, and tenderness, The Prince explores the varying degrees of sexual orientation and personae that men subscribe to and project given their circumstances.
Many of the men engage in homosexual acts with each other even though they outwardly identify as heterosexual. Stuck within the dollhouse of a prison, the ideas of power and authority are also thrown into question. The officers in charge treat their elevated status as a weapon to assert authority and instill fear.
This exploration of power, identity, and masculinity offers a unique perspective into the ways that LGBTQIA+ people – and more broadly, all humans – defend, hide or conform to the world around them. Not just as a means of self preservation, but as a way to make sense of a world that they themselves may not fully know or understand.
Though it may seem bleak at times, this film carries a message of hope and perseverance. The Prince shows us that through the grace of love and caring for each other, we will find happiness and self-acceptance in the most unlikely of places.
– Derrek Wall