13 February 2007 | bkoganbing
It's Never Too Late For Love, Even If It's Battery Operated
Better Than Chocolate is a Canadian film about the relationship between mother and daughter which turns out to be a lot closer than we're originally led to believe. As the mother, Wendy Crewson appears to be oblivious to the fact that daughter Karyn Dwyer is a lesbian.
At least that's how it appears when she drops in unannounced on her daughter and a recent new girl friend, Christina Cox. The pretext is that Dwyer has dropped out of the university, but Crewson wants to check out more than that.
Acting honors in this film go to Peter Outerbridge who plays the transgender woman Judy, formerly Jeremy. Outerbridge in his own way is playing a role as much a pioneering effort as Hillary Swank in Boys Don't Cry. Had this been a major American film, we might have been talking Oscar for him.
Outerbridge is a wise old soul who's seen life from a few different perspectives. She's been cast out by her family, kind of like Michael Dunn is Ship of Fools. Just as Dunn's parents didn't want a dwarf around and gave him spending money to constantly travel, Outerbridge's parents by him a flat precisely so he can live away from them. It's quite a scene when Judy discovers that the flat is really a kiss off. Crewson and Outerbridge aid each other in their moment of crisis.
If nothing else should have tipped her off that Dwyer was not living the 'normal' life those battery operated sex toys should have said something. Of course Crewson finds they have their uses and she who has said that sex is now being sworn off for chocolate finds that even battery operated love is better than no love at all.
Better Than Chocolate is funny and sweet and endearing all at the same time. A triple threat on the emotions from Anne Wheeler in Canada.