19 December 1999 | Steve-176
Rose Troche introduced herself to us in 1994 with the small budget, pleasant lesbian love story called Go Fish which was set in the United States.
Her very assured Bedrooms And Hallways moves its locale to urban England and follows the will I, won't I musings of Leo (Kevin McKidd).
He's fallen for five o'clock shadowed Irishman Brendan (James Purefoy) but Leo fears he might have got himself into trouble. He's terrified of falling in love with a straight man.
But is Brendan straight or gay or both? He's just come out of a long standing relationship with a woman.
The two men meet at a men's s group run by a serious eyed and voiced Keith (Four Weddings and a Funeral's Simon Callow).
It would seem that Rose Troche and her team find a lot that goes on at these groups to be pretty funny. There's much clasping of the "honesty rock" and a particularly apt solution to catering.
Meanwhile the sexually unambiguous characters get their fair shake. The flag is flown strongly for all sexual inclinations.
Very camp Darren (Tom Hollander) knows what he wants. He's having a great time with Jeremy a real estate agent played with terrific intensity by Australian actor Hugo Weaving. They sneak into people's houses which are on the market to have sex.
Leo is wavering, he's showing some interest in women as well as in Brendan and Darren is incensed, expecting calls from the sex police. Meanwhile Angie and Sybil have no qualms about being happily heterosexual. But all remains fluid.
Bedrooms and Hallways is a cheerful comedy romance with a homosexual bent. It gathers pace in its final third when, as in nearly all comedy romances, everyone finds a mate and/or a lover. There are plenty of laughs in what is a smart, impressive new movie from Rose Troche.
Things have changed over the years in films. The boys and girls used to be nearly ten years younger in these sorts of comedies and we were used to them finding a life long, heterosexual partner in the final reel, to then live happily ever after.
These days a three night trial liaison is probably more than can be expected, a situation which more suitably fits the thirty somethings these films are about.