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Roger Lloyd Pack,
Giles De'Ath is a widower who doesn't like anything modern. He goes to movies and falls in love with film star, Ronnie Bostock. He then investigates everything about the movie and Ronnie. After that he travels to Long Island city where Ronnie lives and meets him, pretending that Ronnie is a great actor and that's why Giles admires him. Written by
When the mailman delivers mail to Ronnie Bostock's mailbox,he raises the mailbox flag, presumably to signal to the resident that mail has been delivered. (Ronnie's girlfriend, seeing the mailbox flag has been raised, seems to interpret the signal accordingly.) Although it may be the convention for mail delivery wherever the director/writer is from, it is not the case on Long Island, where it is the custom for the resident to raise the mailbox flag to alert the mailman that mail is in the mailbox waiting to be picked up. Once the mail has been picked up, the mailman lowers the flag - the opposite of what occurred in the film. See more »
It is so difficult to know where I should begin, especially when, unlike you, I already know the ending. But let us say that this story began with end of another.
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In the climax scene when John Hurt finally confesses to Jason Priestley why he's insinuated himself into his life, Hurt brings up such couples as Paul Verlaine and Arthur Rimbaud, Jean Cocteau and Raymond Ratiguet. Watching the film I thought of another of Cocteau's famous same sex liaisons, Cocteau and actor Jean Marais. It seems closest to what Hurt fantasizes for himself with Priestley.
With an obvious bow to Thomas Mann who wrote about a similar story in Rome, Love And Death On Long Island concerns a middle aged writer with the gruesome name of Giles De'Ath played by John Hurt. He's a cultured gay man who lives alone and has pretty much let life pass him by. He does without television, a computer, but is persuaded to go to the cinema in London which he hasn't visited in over 20 years because an adaption of one of E.M. Forster's stories is on the bill.
Instead he buys a ticket for a teen sex comedy flick, Hot Pants College II and is struck dumb by the physical beauty of one of the cast members, Jason Priestley. It happens to all of us be it the same or the opposite sex, but Hurt decides he has to get close to him and never mind those pesky laws about stalking.
He researches his love object from, where else, those adolescent teen magazines. And finding out he lives in the Hamptons out in Suffolk County, Hurt goes to America and then takes that long ride from Penn Station out to the Hamptons to see if he can arrange an 'accidental' meeting.
It works beyond Hurt's wildest expectation, though Priestley's girl friend, fashion model Fiona Loewi doesn't know quite what to make of Hurt. How it all ends you have to see the film for.
Jason Priestley certainly didn't have to do much research to play teen idol Ronnie Bostock. He was fresh from 90210 as Brandon Walsh and certainly his life was its own research. He could have played it shallow and that would have been an easy and acceptable way out, but Priestley taps some deeper emotions in his performance.
Love And Death On Long Island was shot on Nova Scotia which certainly passes for the Hamptons. This review is dedicated to that duo that Hurt had aspiration of emulating, Jean Cocteau and Jean Marais.
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