In The City
Sebastian (Alex House) comes to Toronto for a week’s visit and he meets his cousin’s boyfriend, Alex (writer-director James Fanizza). There is an instant attraction between the two that takes them to explore a forbidden passion. They connect on an emotional level but the problem they have is that Sebastian has to return to Argentina and both men wonder if their love for each other will continue.
The film is a triple-header for James Fanizza who writes, directs and stars in his film. As Alex, he meets Sebastian and actually initiates what is to happen between them. Alex’s boyfriend is Sebastian’s cousin and both Alex and Sebastian feel bad about what they’re doing, but that does not hinder them. They both know that the relationship will end when Sebastian goes home yet they cannot help how they feel. Their short but passionate changes them, unlocks deep feelings inside of each.
The short length of time in the film makes us wonder how these two could even realize what is happening to them and yet we see them quickly act on their feelings. The audience anticipates what will happen but they certainly are blind to it at first. (For the young, falling in love happens quickly. But love is complicated, and Alex and Sebastian face that as well. Alex knows that Sebastian is the of his life and he’s leaving to go back home to Argentina forever. He also knows that a relationship is impossible but in his last 10 minutes with Sebastian he knows that he must let him go. We all know that sometimes the opportunity of love comes to us at inopportune times and we are faced with the challenge of making very quick but life-changing decisions with no guarantee. If we do not do so, we live with feelings of regret of what might have been and sometimes by taking the risk we find true happiness. We really only know later what will happen if we decide to wait.
Both the screenplay and the actors are superlative and Fanizza does a wonderful job of presenting the situation. We see the emotions of the characters clearly and we get a really fine first film from this director.