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Love is Strange


Stars: John Lithgow, Alfred Molina, Marisa Tomei, Darren Burrows, Cheyenne Jackson, Manny Perez, Charlie Tahan, Christina Kirk

Director: Ira Sachs

Having lived together for nearly 40 years, gay partners George and Ben (Molina, Lithgow) decide to get married. Unfortunately the decision costs George his job as music teacher at a Catholic academy.

As Ben, an artist, has retired, the newly-weds find they can longer afford their Manhattan apartment. While they hunt for something cheaper, Ben moves in with his nephew (Burrows) and his wife (Tomei) and teenage son (Tahan) and soon everyone is on edge.

George, meanwhile, has other problems. Moving in with friends, he misses Ben terribly and soon feels like a fish out of water.

Tomei is a writer and Ben's constant chattering is an increasing annoyance. 'I can't work if there's someone else around,' Ben tells her, little realising that he has put his finger on her own problem.

Lithgow and Molina play wonderfully well in partnership, but one of the film's problems is that it allows them too little time together. And the director permits several of his sequences to go on too long, notably a crying scene and the skateboard finale. It's a quiet movie and just a little bit dull - except when the two stars are on screen together.

David Quinlan

USA 2014. UK Distributor: Altitude. Colour (unspecified).
94 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 1.

Review date: 07 Feb 2015