• WARNING: Spoilers

    Wild Flowers, filmed in a small working-class town on the west coast of Scotland, is British director Robert Smith's tribute to the strength of women, culled from childhood memories of families at whose head is the matriarch. The camerawork is slow and sensual, covering a clean and crisp seaside village. The accompanying musical score (original compositions in the Scottish tradition) floats without effort around and through the narrative. These elements, combined with a sharp screenplay and characters that are sometimes very charming, belie the fact that Wild Flowers gently and lovingly twists themes to their breaking point. Sadie, a young woman from Glasgow, is visiting her boyfriend's hometown. She agrees to stay and meet his family, and unwittingly uncovers his mothers' secret--an undiminished attraction to women. Sadie is drawn by the mother's wit and energy, and her interest in Angus (the boyfriend) diminishes by increments equal to her fascination with Angus's mother. Add to the story a bitter and unflinching grandmother (the true matriarch), a dependent husband and sons, a few local eccentrics, and a couple of harmless busybodies, and you have a typically good British film, poised for the kill. Set in flashback, and often in Sadie's psychological space, there is the theme of tradition that is as binding as it is nurturing. What is the proper setting for passion? At what point in any life does passion concede to contentedness? And where within tradition is there a place for those who are, as the film puts it, "born dissatisfied"? - San Francisco International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival