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Thread: JUST A QUESTION OF LOVE (Christian Faure 2000)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    SF Bay Area

    JUST A QUESTION OF LOVE (Christian Faure 2000)


    Found on IMDb here.

    Elegant and touching

    Laurent (a vibrant Cyrille Thouvenin) is a 23-year-old agricultural student in Lille (with a passion for poetry) who knows he's gay but lets his parents think he's straight and that his roommate Carole (a sweet Caroline Veyt) is his future wife. He's held in this bind by the fact that a gay cousin, Marc, who was like a brother to him, came out only to wind up dying rejected by his parents, an example of in-family homophobia that seems to have been all too well accepted by his own mother and father. Laurent has been on a downward spiral in school ever since Marc's death. Marc's parents are around at family parties, the mother a basket case on tranquilizers, the father stolid and still unforgiving. This angers Laurent, but the trouble is that his mom and dad, who run a pharmacy, are very dear to him. He loves his parents; he loves family; and he loves kids. But he's stuck in a charade. It's already hurting Carole, who's more than a little in love with him, though she knows full well about his sexuality.

    All this has to change when Laurent is attached as a trainee (stagère) to a nursery and lab run by the slightly older Cédric (sexy, soulful Stéphan Guérin-Tillié) and they fall in love.The more grown up and independent Cédric is impatient with Laurent's playing the "little hetero to mom and dad." When he came out to his mother Emma (Eva Darlan) 11 years earlier on the death of his dad, Cédric said she could "take it or leave it." Laurent's pretense is exploded from an unexpected source. The film takes us sympathetically through the pain of Laurent's parents and Emma's efforts to help.

    The special virtue of Just a Question of Love is its balance. If it's primarily from the point of view of Laurent, and secondarily Cédric, and takes pains (though it's joyful, not painful) to make their love real (without any explicit nudity or sex though, just passionate kissing), it's just as much about the parents' difficult journey toward understanding of their sons' sexuality.

    A beautiful gay coming-out-to-the-parents film that had an unusually high viewership and almost universally positive response when shown originally on French TV, this has meant a lot to a lot of gay men, especially young ones thinking about love and conflicts with parents and the kind of "intense love relationship such as I dream of having and regret not to have had up till now," as one young French blogger typically put it. In IMDb comments that rate it, it has gotten nothing but a 10/10: enough said? Splendid performances by everybody, especially Thouvenin, Guérin-Tillié, and Darlan; this is far more than a "TV movie" and like some of the best contemporary French films, manages to be both elegant and emotionally direct.

    With his looks and personality, Cyrille Thouvenin is irresistible in the film: he's always running and leaping, troubled, acting out, but also bursting with youthful energy and smiles. The restrained but warm Eva Darlan is also very memorable. This is the kind of film a gay man can watch over and over, with much pleasure and some tears. Doing so is also helping my French quite a bit.

    IMDB 7 March 2007
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 07-08-2015 at 12:01 PM.


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