In the Portuguese romantic drama The Way He Looks Leo is a blind teenager struggling with independence under his over protective parents. Each day he attends school and walks home with his close friend Giovanna, often discussing important coming of age topics such as the fact that neither has experienced their first kiss.
Following holiday break, a new boy named Gabriel arrives at the school and is seated behind Leo. Giovanna quickly gravitates towards Gabriel and he soon finds friendship with Giovanna and Leo. Leo, meanwhile, begins to consider going abroad to get away from the ridicule he often faces at school and the over protective parenting he faces at home.
The three friends attend a party with school friends and Giovanna gets drunk and expresses her frustration with Gabriel for replacing her in her friendship with Leo. Gabriel, also drunk, eventually kisses Leo, but doesn’t know if Leo feels the same way. As time passes, Leo begins to reconsider his plan to study abroad and embraces his feelings for Gabriel.
“This is a wonderful movie.”
— Randy Cordova, Arizona Central
“The tale, from Brazilian writer-director Daniel Ribeiro, is told with such tenderness, such intelligence and such aching honesty that it takes on the weight of something far more significant than puppy love. Like its subject, first kisses and best friends, it’s hard to forget.”
— Michael O’Sullivan, Washington Post
“Ribeiro’s screenplay, which is marbled with moments of humor as well as emotion, feels extremely well-tuned into the conflicted emotional lives of his adolescent characters, who often retreat into the safety of their childhood comfort zone after every exciting, but also scary, excursion into the adult unknown.”
— Boyd van Hoeij, The Hollywood Reporter
“Delivering a heartfelt message and reminding us all that relationships should be more about finding soul mates and less soulless eye candy.”
— Alexander Ryll, Gay Essential
Did You Know?
The Way He Looks is based on the Brazilian short film, I Don’t Want to Go Back Alone. Opening at the Berlin International Film Festival, The Way He Looks earned great praise from audiences and critics alike, and was the 5th most viewed film during it’s Brazilian release on April 10, 2014. Review our Gay Themed Films Here