Great Performances (1971– )
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The Lost Language of Cranes 

When a young gay man comes out of the closet. His friends support him, but when he comes out to his parents, he stirs up a wealth of hidden feelings and secrets in their relationship.
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When a young gay may comes out of the closet. His friends support him, but when he comes out to his parents, he stirs up a wealth of hidden feelings and secrets in their relationship. Written by Kathy Li

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24 June 1992 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Low-key
2 November 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Story about two young men in England--Philip (Angus Macfayden) and Eliot (Corey Parker)--falling in love. Philip tells his parents--his mother thinks it's a disaster--his father (Brian Cox) remains strangely quiet. It turns out HE'S gay too and his sons coming out is forcing him into a decision.

Low-key drama. I caught it on PBS (slightly edited) and then saw it complete on VHS in the early 1990s. I liked it but can't say I was too impressed. For starters the low-key aspect of the story was TOO low-key. Everything seemed muted. Macfayden and Parker were (surprisingly) terrible in their roles. I never believed these guys even liked each other, let alone love each other. So a crucial turn halfway through didn't carry the emotional weight it should have. The happy ending all around seemed too pat for me also.

Still it was brave to make a movie like this back in 1991 AND get it distributed. It was well-directed and well-written. Also Cox was excellent in his role. So, it IS interesting in terms of gay cinema--it portrays gay men in a realistic manner (especially having hunky, masculine Macfayden play one) but it just doesn't come across strongly enough. Worth a viewing but don't go out of your way.


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