Kevin O’Brien’s directorial debut At the End of the Day draws on a subject close to him – the homophobic intolerance of conservative Christians, who ignore the Bible’s teachings of love and acceptance in favour of a few sentences that label same-sex love a sin.
You might think you know the story: two men meet at a remote cruising spot, where men have been mysteriously disappearing for weeks, and find themselves falling deeper into a murderous cat and mouse chase. But this surface level synopsis is the only true similarity between Devil’s Path and 2013’s widely acclaimed anti-thriller Stranger by the Lake, a film to which it will likely be compared based on the subject matter alone.
Every Act of Life proves to be a surprisingly comprehensive documentary, effectively recounting six decades of a successful career at a brisk pace. For theatre fans, this is essential viewing – and for those of you like me, who shamefully don’t watch as many plays as they should, this is still well worth a look.
The Miseducation of Cameron Post is set in the early nineties in Montana, but the film doesn’t wear the cultural differences separating then and now too heavily; a cassette tape here, a “Clinton/Gore” bumper sticker there, but no detail significant enough to leave the audience thinking that what we’re seeing is a relic of the past, and not something that’s unfortunately still taking place well into the 21st century.
Quirky American coming of age dramas aren’t exactly hard to come by – every other film that has emerged from the Sundance film festival feels like it could easily fall into this category, with very few managing to stand the test of time. Hearts Beat Loud undeniably fits into the pantheon of stereotypical “Sundance movies”, but offers something far more emotionally substantial than your run of the mill coming of age tale.
Chilean filmmaker Sebastián Lelio has quickly grown to become a major figure in world cinema, with his most internationally acclaimed titles empathetically depicting the emotional struggles of women who don’t fit into perceived societal norms. There’s no wonder he’s been labelled by many as a successor to Spanish director Pedro Almodovar, and his English language debut Disobedience only furthers that comparison.
The directorial debut of Monja Art is an angsty teen drama that seems perfectly engineered to speak to its target audience. Seventeen (Siebzehn) manages to convey the messiness of relationships during later teenage years, acknowledging the first glimpses of emotional trauma without reserving any judgement for the often reckless behaviour of the characters.
Can gay men be homophobic, and show a lack of understanding towards the key points and principles of the LGBT movement? Chilean comedy-drama Shining Moon explores this theme, showing that even older gay men, old enough to have been around during the origins of the gay liberation movement, aren’t immune from discriminatory beliefs towards a more developed LGBT culture.