A poignant romantic drama examines the life of gay 26 year old, ex-monk, school teacher living in Manhattan. When he meets a man at a gay bar, they connect and are soon living together. Unfortunately their views on monogamy don't match.
When David, an ex-monk still in his twenties meets Mark, he falls hard; soon he's asked Mark if they can live together. Things go well for awhile, and then differences in their definition of "commitment" begin to push them apart. Mark wants other sexual adventures, David tries to go along. Can they talk through the crisis in their relationship or is a breakup in the offing? David sees his relationship with Mark as a marriage, so if it ends, can David's heart ever heal? Written by
I was genuinely surprised by how good this film is, especially given that it was made only a few years after Stonewall. The portrayal of the relationships the protagonist has was very moving and real, the psychological depth much more complex than most films that are made today, gay or straight. Of all the movies I've seen in my life, I have never seen so many beautiful images of gay male love that are so celebratory and happy. It's like a Walt Whitman love poem brought to vivid life. The movie is worth seeing just for the last five minutes alone.
The film is also an incredible historical archive. Some of my favorite sequences were interviews made with people on the street during the 1973 "Christopher Street Pride Parade," probably among the first Pride festivals ever. Many of the comments made could have been said today. This film shows a slice of life at the beginning of the gay sexual revolution, and at the same time deals with all the complicated issues of falling in love that remain timeless. That it shows life before AIDS also adds a layer of poignancy that the filmmakers could never have planned for.
I was sad to see that the principal figures in the movie, the actors and director, didn't do much more cinema work beyond this film. I hope they know they created a very special film that still can touch one's heart.
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