Tuesday, August 12, 2014

LOVE IS STRANGE ...... A Village Affair reel deal review

LOVE IS STRANGE Director Ira Sacks

Not since My Cousin Eileen (1955), Echos of Silence (1963) and Next Stop Greenwich Village (1976) has there been such an authentic narrative film that captures the NOW of Greenwich Village in the way that Ira Sacks and his co-writer Mauricio Zacharias have done in this poignant and hilarious tale of what happens when two men who have lived together longer than anyone can remember (39 years) decide that now that they can they will get married. Ben is a Catholic school music teacher (Alfred Molina) and George (John Lithgow) a painter. They do. And all hell breaks out. What Sacks has done is to show that changing the law does not make everything perfect for gay people. Ben is immediately fired when they get back from their honeymoon. The Roman Catholic Church will not have an openly gay teacher no matter how good the teacher is with their impressionable students. Now they can no longer afford their apartment so they give it up and face the reality of Greenwich Village today: finding an affordable place to rent. To the rescue comes their multi-generation circle of friends who agree to put them up until they find a new living space. Not together, but separately. Ben and George suddenly are old waifs at the mercy of their friends lifestyles and vice versa. This is where the comedic aspects of the story lives. While Hillary may have said it takes a Village I don't think she was thinking of this Greenwich Village of friends who come to Ben and Georges rescue. Kate, a successful writer (Marisa Tomei ) and her husband Elliott (Darren Burrows) invite George to share their teenage son's (Charlie Tahan) room. It has a bunk bed. And it is here in how with a their good intentions the reality of disruption becomes the source of comedy rather than melodrama. Sacks proved in his underrated Hollywood film Married life (see it) he knows like Robert Altman the humor in life's ordinary crisis. I would have said that Tomei (who grew up in Greenwich Village) steals the film, but I can't because fellow actors,  Alfred Molina and John Lithgow,  fearlessly make Ben and George into real, complicated, identifiable, characters ..in the same way Sean Penn did in Harvey Milk. Nice that we see on the screen gay men whose love and relationship endures. That gay relationships,  like opposite sex ones can last a lifetime.  

Sacks recenty was honored with the coveted VISIONARY award at New Fest 2014  
Ira Sachs acceptance speech after receiving NEW FEST visonary award

Watch :intimate dscussion of the film at lincoln center with director Ira Saxhs, actors Marisa Tomei , John lithgow moderated by Eugene Hernandez. Mine is the second question,

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