Weekend Review and Trailer

It would be way too easy to simply sum up Andrew Haigh‘s Weekend as the gay version of the hopeless romanticism found in Richard Linklater‘s Before Sunrise.  Both films feature a budding romance doomed from the start and both present the uncanny ability to make the viewer feel as if he or she is a part of the affair.  Weekend however, as an added bonus, has something that Linklater’s film does not – aside from the gay sex, of course – Haigh’s film smartly tackles the frustrations of what it means to be gay in a society that’s primarily straight.

The film zeros in on Russell, a gay man whose late night cruising ends in a sleepover with Glen.  Their one-night stand turns into a three-day fling where, with the help of alcohol and drugs, protective shells become broken and theologies on love, sex, and what being gay really means are pondered.

Perhaps the most difficult task in making an exceptional or even good romantic film is having a believable connection between two leads.  I’d venture to say that 19 out of every 20 films I see where I’m asked to care about two people’s feelings for each other fails to achieve that goal.  I had no trouble believing the genuineness felt between Russell and Glen, therefore was affected by both the sweet and the sour of their relationship.

My only issue with this film had to deal with language.  No, I didn’t find the swearing offensive, nor did I have any qualms with the sexually uncouth discussions being had, rather my issue was with the fact that I couldn’t make out all that was being said.  There was quite a bunch of mumbling, and being that they had strong England accents, a few lines here and there were lost on me.  It should be mandatory that films from Europe which are spoken in English come with subtitles.

I recommend this film to every hopeless romantic out there, no matter your sexual orientation.  It’s not every year that a film is able to capture what true romance is all about in such a stripped down, non-Hollywood way.

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