Weekend (2011) – Andrew Haigh

Two people are attracted to each other, their bodies and minds are stimulated by the other. They are kept apart by their wounded feelings and what they perceive as societal pressures. This is the story of Weekend in which a Russell (Tom Cullen), a man in his 30s finds Glen (Chris New) at a club and they sleep together. The next morning Glen asks Russell a number of questions for an art project he’s working on about gay culture, Russell is put off by discussing such intimate feelings for something he worries will be made public. Glen, we find out is very political where Russell would just rather be.

The fascinating aspect of Weekend is that it isn’t a message picture, it’s just about two people with two points of view and we see them discuss them and debate each other. They’re real people and they have fights that couples have. Glen has been hurt in previous relationships and resists getting too close to Russell. The movie is about how we invent reasons to keep us from being happy; pride, priorities, politics. Cullen and New create something we care about and would fight for even if they won’t and the best moment in the movie is of the two of them lying together while Russell comes out to his father, roleplayed by Glen. The moment exists as a metaphor for the movie; wouldn’t it be wonderful if we just did the right thing and treated each other decently instead of creating our own roadblocks, as well as a sweet political tome.

This is not a melodrama, or even a romance, but a small window into the lives of two people who might have been perfect if it wasn’t for their own imperfections. “Ignore them,” advises Glen to Russell at one point in the movie, ahh, but if they could.

Leave a Reply