Sunday, October 5th, 2014

Four Moons aka Cuatro Lunas

This enchanting debut feature from Mexican writer/director Sergio Tovar Velarde is essentially 4 stories about love and heartbreak from 4 different generations of men and they all share a common theme of self-acceptance. The youngest and most tenderest of the group is a shy 11 year old called Maurizio who develops a crush on Oliver his cousin. When Maurizio plucks up the courage to act on his feelings, Oliver storms off and not only refuses to hang out with him anymore but actually takes to taunting him at school.  A fight breaks out and both boys and their parents are hauled in front of the Principal. Oliver saves his neck by blurting out what happened in Maurizio’s bedroom to the horror of them all. Particularly Maurizio’s father who had always been distant from his only son as he considered him  too effeminate. 

Fito and Leo on the other hand were childhood friends who lost contact when Leo moved to Mexico City and they now re-unite by chance at the University where they are both students. They pick up their friendship where they had left off and are soon inseparable.  To both their surprise they find that their feelings for each other develops into something neither has experienced before. Their attempts at sex are clumsy at first but they are soon blurting out declarations of love for each other. However both boys still live at home and whereas Fito’s mother is in something of a daze after recently becoming a widow, Leo parents are evidently an entirely different matter and so he will not risk coming out to them even though remaining closeted may end his relationship with Fito.

Hugo and Andres have been together for 10 years but Hugo has developed a wandering eye. His latest conquest is Sebastian and when he feels that this may be much more than just a passing fling he tells all to Andres.  He is still very much in love with Hugo and so asks his unfaithful partner to give him just two weeks to see if he can make their own relationship work again, on the proviso for that for the next 14 days he doesn’t see Sebastian at all. After a rocky start, it suddenly seems that Andres will indeed succeed but then just before the deadline is up Hugo cannot help himself again and goes back for another session with Sebastian.

Joaquin is a retired married college professor, and a grandfather, who’s life and career never quite turned out the way he wanted. He has now taken to going to gay steam rooms to fulfil his latent desires. On this occasion he spots a stunning hunk who is obviously a hustler and when he approaches him for a price, is distressed to discover that he charges so much. The following day he tries again and the price has increased but he nevertheless agrees to pay and they make a date for the next day.  Joaquin raids his wife’s savings account for his moment of pleasure with Gilberto, who like most hustlers is straight, and he is trying to raise enough money to cross the US border to join his wife and family. Joaquin asks him for one extra favor.  He is about to be finally honored for his life’s work as a Ceremony by some University and he asks Gilberto if he would just come and be part of the audience, for a price naturally.

Verdade gives each of these stories the ending they deserve, but not necessarily the ones that we would expect. They are four differing kinds of love although each one is full of hope and the true value of self-acceptance. His refreshing stance on these conflicts facing gay men of all generations is a sheer joy to watch, and a remarkable achievement from such a new (ish) filmmaker.

Well cast, beautifully written and directed : this is destined to be a firm favorite with audiences everywhere (particularly gay ones).

Highly recommended.

Posted by queerguru  at  14:13


Genres:  drama

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