Directed by Ira Sachs, John Lithgow and Alfred Molina star in the incredibly warm and heart wrenching Love Is Strange.
The story follows Ben and George, a gay couple living in NYC. After 39 years together the very loving couple finally tie the knot, but instead of this bringing them wedded bliss, they are forced to live apart as news of their nuptials becomes public knowledge resulting in George being fired from his job as a choir director at a Catholic school.
The film highlights life’s vulnerability, especially as we age. The strain of their relationship financially, physically and emotionally are all put to the test due to high New York rent and unemployment. This is how Ben and George see their life change from the seemingly happiest time in their lives to the most challenging.
Lithgow and Molina are so real in their relationship that you can almost feel them finishing each others sentences. From the opening scene there is no doubt in the viewers mind that this is the real thing. It is a love that is portrayed as one we should all be so lucky to have, yet this film does have such a bitter sweet tone; The joy of being in love and being loved back, against a backdrop of being old, unemployable and no longer considered the core of society. The film shows us how even our family and close friends may not be able to step up and save the day during hard times.
However, what it does do is shout from the high rise roof tops of New York City that love is what matters, and in the end it’s all we have. (Seriously welling up right now thinking about it).
If you enjoy an honest and laid bare human story then this is the film for you. Excellently subtle and sensitive story telling that will leave you smiling and wanting to hug your nearest and dearests asap!
Love is Strange is out in cinemas from 18 December.
Reviewed by Ingrid Grenr