Lukas is twenty years old, new in town and harbouring a secret which he can’t bring himself to share with anyone apart from his best friend Ine and his on-line friends. Lukas soon launches himself onto the bars and clubs of Cologne, indulging in parties, drinking sessions and alcohol fuelled nights in clubs. When Lukas meets muscled hunk and Alpha male Fabio a strong attraction develops between them. The film follows an erotically charged path as Fabio and Lukas try to discover if love can really conquer all or will their differences result in disaster?
The film carries a strong message about gender identity, masculinity, femininity and sexuality. That’s not a euphemism for dullness as this film is far from that. It’s definitely not your average boy meets boy love story but actually makes the viewer think about their own prejudices and attitudes. The character of Lukas is one of a sweet vulnerability coupled with an insecure masculinity whilst Fabio struts around dripping with testosterone and attitude (and an amazingly hot torso). The two leads are also both very easy on the eye and portray the sexual tension between the couple to perfection.
Overall this is a well paced film which portrays both courage and confusion. It makes you stop and think about what identity means for people in a world of androgyny, drag kings and queens, shifting gender roles and differing sexual identities. Any film which manages to broach difficult subjects whilst still being entertaining has got to be worth a look.
North Sea Texas
Pim is a young boy from a small Belgian coastal town who lives a dreary existence with his mother, Yvette, who is a boozy accordion player. Pim dreams of beauty pageants, princesses and Gino, the handsome boy next door to escape life with his blowsy neglectful mother. As Pim moves into his teenage years his life takes on unexpected turns as he becomes more deeply involved with Gino and his family and a hot and hunky young traveller called Zoltan arrives back on the scene.
Cult short film maker Bavo Defume has made a film which is inspired more by beauty than by social realism. The intention was to make a film which depicts more than the sometimes grey and gritty world we can inhabit. The film is set in an unspecified time period with classic retro patterns and furniture and luscious coastal landscapes. Although the world that the characters inhabit is sometimes stylised, the acting is natural and convincing. The result is a film which is both moving and beautiful to watch. It also holds the viewer’s interest through the drama played out so convincingly between the young actors. Coming of age dramas don’t get much more luscious, stylish and watchable than this.
Romeos and North Sea Texas are both showing as part of Pout Fest gay and lesbian film festival at venues across England and Ireland throughout August till 6th September http://poutfest.co.uk/
Romeos is available now to buy on DVD and North Sea Texas is released on DVD on the 6th August