Tuesday, April 05, 2011

LLGFF: Hey Boy, Hey Girl

After the inter-generational lesbian clash of The Owls, it's interesting to view films pairing young gay men and straight women.

Sasha is a German coming out drama whose titular character comes from a conservative ex-Yugoslav background. His pal Jiao, though disappointed by Sasha romantically, stands by him, as he negotiates the tricky terrain of lusting after his older gay piano teacher, while keeping his budding sexuality secret from his warring parents and the prying eyes of his younger brother. It's mostly played for laughs, with Sasha's fumbling attempts to seduce the teacher contrasted with the desperate aspirations of his mother.

I was very curious to see Heartbeats, the latest from the hotly tipped enfant terrible, Xavier Dolan, and it didn't disappoint. A frustrated menage-a-trois featuring Dolan's Francis and his best pal, Marie, both lusting after the cherubic and sexually ambiguous Nicolas, the film plays as a coming-of-age comedy-drama, with Francis and Marie's relationship coming under severe strain, as their increasingly desperate efforts to gain Nicolas' favours takes its toll. Brilliant use of pop tunes adds to the tension and air of yearning, with Dolan showing a sure hand as writer, director and co-star.

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