God's Own Country
A tender and heartfelt coming-of-age love story by first time director (and writer) Francis Lee that was unequivocally sweet, charming and sincere. Comparisons with "Brokeback Mountain" will be inevitable but this film with its limited indie-budget and lesser known actors felt more visceral and more honest.
As a first time director, Lee's showed a lot of potential but he definitely still fell prey to a couple of cliched tropes, some of which worked, but some did not. His pacing needed some work and some fats could be trimmed off that would not necessarily hurt the story. However, he excelled at the more intimate moments and managed to efficiently and successfully illustrate and evolve his complicated protagonist.
Lead actor Josh O'Connor rose to the challenge of portraying the emotional walled off protagonist and it was rather beautiful seeing his defences slowly wear off as he embraced his future, his sexuality and the hand that fate had dealt him.
Co-lead Alec Secareanu had the less flashy role but he brought a tenderness that did not seem forced and that really helped to sell the honesty of the relationship.
An honest and tender film that wore its heart on its sleeve and forebodes a bright future for Lee.