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Love! Valour! Compassion! (1997)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  16 May 1997 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 2,584 users   Metascore: 59/100
Reviews: 50 user | 29 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

Gregory invites seven friends to spend the summer at his large, secluded 19th-century home in upstate New York. The seven are: Bobby, Gregory's "significant other," who is blind but who ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Buzz Hauser
...
Perry Sellars
...
Gregory Mitchell
Randy Becker ...
...
Arthur Pape
...
...
John Jeckyll, James Jeckyll
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Storyline

Gregory invites seven friends to spend the summer at his large, secluded 19th-century home in upstate New York. The seven are: Bobby, Gregory's "significant other," who is blind but who loves to explore the home's garden using his sense of touch; Art and Perry, two "yuppies" who drive a Volvo and who celebrate their 14th anniversary together that summer; John, a dour expatriate Briton who loathes his twin brother James; Ramon, John's "companion," who is physically attracted to Bobby and immediately tries to seduce the blind man; James, a cheerful soul who is in the advanced stages of AIDS; and Buzz, a fan of traditional Broadway musicals who is dealing with his own HIV-positive status. Written by Dennis Lewis <dsl@sprynet.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Eight men. One summer. Figure it out.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic nudity, some sexuality and strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

16 May 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ahava Ometz V'Hemla  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$167,345 (USA) (16 May 1997)

Gross:

$2,874,242 (USA) (8 August 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Feature film debut for Justin Kirk, who portrays Bobby Brahms. See more »

Goofs

The action takes place in the Northern Hemisphere, over Memorial Day, yet a character mentions seeing the constellation Orion, which is not visible from there at that time of year. See more »

Quotes

Ramon Fornos: Fuck you, John.
Buzz: That's right, sweetheart, you tell 'im- fuck you, John!
John Jeckyll: Americans use that expression entirely too often.
All but John: Fuck you, John!
John Jeckyll: In England we think it nearly as often as you do, but you don't actually say it to someone's face- it would be too rude.
All but John: Fuuuuuck you.
John Jeckyll: What do you mean when you tell another person 'fuck you?'
Ramon Fornos: Fuck you! And don't you ever call me 'chiquita' again!
Buzz: This is good.
John Jeckyll: I think it means several things- mixed signals, I believe they call them in theraputic circles. 'I ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

References On Golden Pond (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
Written by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart
Performed by Ella Fitzgerald
Courtesy of Verve Records
By Arrangement with Polygram Film & TV Licensing
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sweet and Sad and Excellent
11 February 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Adapted from a hit play by Terence McNally and utilizing most of the original stage cast, this film cannot hide its theatrical roots... nor should it.

This is a sweet and sad story set against a perfect summer at a perfect country estate in upstate New York (?) that shows the lives of 8 gay men as they come to terms with AIDS, death, love, compassion, and the thin bonds of friendship that hold them together.

Their summer idyll is a microcosm that, apart from the real world we never see, touches us all because it is their humanity that dominates this story. That one is a dancer, a lawyer, a choreographer, etc. is unimportant. They are 8 gay men whose lives are intertwined in love, valour, and compassion.

Jason Alexander is very good in the Nathan Lane role, the portly man dying of AIDS who, late in life finds love. John Glover is brilliant (repeating his Tony-winning role) as twins: one a nasty hateful man; the other a sweet man whose death from AIDS is imminent. Stephen Spinella and John Benjamin Hickey are solid as the yuppie long-term couple. Stephen Bogardus is warm as the stuttering host, Justin Kirk is surprisingly good as the blind man, and Randy Becker is good as the Latino hunk whose causes so much trouble.

The film is full of stereotypes and warm humor and terrific moments of truth. This is not a revolutionary film that tries to change the world, but it is a wise and bittersweet look at the lives of gay men in the time of AIDS, men whose lives are shattered (and ended) by a cruel and heartless disease.

There's nothing earth-shattering here, no insights that make the lives of gay men clear and understandable to non-gays. But it is a work of great honesty and simplicity in showing 8 gay men as.... human beings.

The scene, when the men go skinnydipping under a summer moon is beautiful in its complete innocence. No viewer can fail to understand their childlike glee in such a simple pleasure.

This film is a must see just because it is not a strident, political rant against the horrors of AIDS. The characters, especially those played by Glover and Alexander, accept their fates with great dignity, humor, and valour. This film is a great tribute to all our victims of AIDS, and a silent condemnation to the society and politics that let it happen.


10 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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