God’s Own Country | IMAGE+NATION


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montreal LESBIAN GAY BI TRANS film festival

God’s Own Country

Francis Lee 2017 United Kingdom 104min english S.-T.F.

One of the best films ever made about gay love, God’s Own Country is rooted in the body: human and animal, puke and spit, beings struggling for life and, just as commonly, dying. Johnny Saxby (Josh O’Connor), like the sublime Yorkshire farmland where he toils, is “beautiful and lonely,” as well as ravaged – by alcohol, by contempt for his lot in life. Slogging through his duties, wounded and hunkered, he shuts out anyone who tries to come close, allowing neither hook-ups to kiss him nor his grandmother or ailing father to quell his destructive ways. When Gheorghe, a dashing Romanian (Alec Secareanu), is hired to help on the farm, Johnny lashes out with embittered racism. But, he is soon struck by Gheorghe’s empathy for the animals, his sensitivity in even the harshest conditions. Through growing closer to Gheorghe, mind and body, mud and blood, Johnny shows promising signs of softness, and a new, revitalized future for farming begins to blossom alongside this potent compassion, if only Johnny can allow himself to transform. Romantic and carnal, ripe with natural symbolism, God’s Own Country is transcendent filmmaking about the power of gentleness. – Michael Belcher

13.75 CAD