Photo: neuzeit Filmagentur

SOYBOY follows the cultural battle for interpretative sovereignty over gender roles that is being played out on the internet, using memes: silly, fast, political and overt miniatures of pop culture. On a journey through the western USA, we develop a documentary project in which we meet people who deal with masculinity: Porn stars, soldiers, supporters of conspiracy theories, men’s rights activists, freefight organisers or transsexual bodybuilders.

SOYBOY, ongoing documentary film project, shooting in progress, 2022-2024

More information:

Funded by Hessische Kulturstiftung

Single screen film + video installation
60 min, HD, stereo audio

Courtesy: Patrick Alan Banfield

Cinematography and concept: Nicolas C. Geissler
Editor and dramaturgical advice: Janina Herhoffer
Film Score: Sascha Blank


The SOYBOY meme is used by the alt-right, mainly by men, especially in North America. The SOYBOY is portrayed as a scrawny, insecure man who, due to the consumption of soy products, produces hardly any male sex hormones and therefore becomes effeminate and must submit to the matriarchy. In this way, emancipatory and feminist men are discredited as unnatural and degenerate. SOYBOY became the rallying cry of the Red Pill movement. This exists as a culture in specific forums such as the well-known 4Chan. Red Pill sees feminism as the enemy of the natural dominance of the male over the female.

The Men’s Movement is a social movement that emerged in the 1960s and 1970s, primarily in Western countries, consisting of groups and organisations of men and their allies who focus on gender issues and whose activities range from self-help and support to lobbying and activism.

The aim of the SOYBOY project is to explore the cultural struggle on the internet over the interpretation of gender roles through memes. What is a man supposed to be today? What is a man anyway? The artistic research in SOYBOY will include both documentary and fictional staged features, and will explore the research process itself through workshops and interviews with alt-right supporters. The visual research in animation, film and still images will be transformed into a multi-channel video installation.

Stills: SOYBOY