JOEL EDGERTON | USA | ENGLISH | 2018 | 114 MIN
A minister’s son must come to terms with his identity when he is forced into a dubious conversion therapy camp by his well-meaning parents in this deeply moving drama based on a true story.
Jared (Lucas Hedges, star of PFF27 Opening Night Film BEN IS BACK), following the script of a well-adjusted teen, lives in Arkansas with his doting mother Nancy (Nicole Kidman) and proud father Marshall (Russell Crowe), a Baptist preacher. After a traumatic encounter, Jared is forced out of the closet to the surprise of his conservative parents. Believing they are doing right by their son, Nancy and Marshall send Jared to Refuge, a conversion therapy camp run by Victor Sykes (Joel Edgerton, who also directs) and a group of men who present as having willed themselves to overcome their homosexuality. Scared, confused, and questioning his own identity, Jared is desperate to remain “normal” and “fix” himself. But, the abusive, homophobic camp environment leads Jared to question whether there is anything within him to correct and the experience may push his relationship with his parents to a devastating breaking point. Adapting the memoir of conversion camp survivor turned activist Garrard Conley, Joel Edgerton offers an incredibly delicate and poignant portrait of a life in transition. Handled with precision and compassion, and bolstered by powerful performances by an ensemble cast, Edgerton’s focused direction provokes a powerful resonance as he weaves through complex material in search of what it means to be human.
CAST: Lucas Hedges, Nicole Kidman, Joel Edgerton, Russell Crowe
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