Review by Dan Skip Allen
Of An Age is an Australian LGBTQIA+ romance by writer/director Goran Stolevski from Focus Features and Roadshow Entertainment. This film had a lot of potential, but unfortunately fell short of high expectations, brought about by solid early buzz.
Ebony (Hattie Hook) is stranded on a beach and doesn't know where she is. She calls for help from her friend Kol (Elias Anton), who — in turn — enlists help from her brother Adam (Thom Green). As they both go for a ride to find Ebony, Kol and Adam get to know each other on the road trip. This would kick off a whirlwind of unexpected self-discovery.
This film is basically a two-hander that focuses mainly on the friendship between Kol and Adam. It's love at first sight for these two guys from different backgrounds. One is from Czechoslovakia, and the other is originally from Australia. Anton's character doesn't feel comfortable in his skin as a gay man, but Green's seems much more at home with his sexuality — perhaps because of their age difference.
The movie splits the narrative into two segments. One is the whole story around Hook's character from 1999, and the other is again centered around Hook's character, as the two main characters reunite at her wedding in 2010. They meet at the airport, and they both go to the wedding and have fun dancing and drinking. However, a revelation may irrevocably change their relationship forever.
The writer/director of this film, Goran Stolevski, creates a burgeoning romance that is difficult to get your head around as a viewer. At one point, he makes it obvious these two love each other, but then he has this moment when they can't be together. The movie gives mixed signals about these two characters that obviously love each other. I say make up your mind as a filmmaker. Don't make it so hard on them as characters or the people watching.
As far as the romantic nature of this movie and the two main characters, it was hard for me to stay engaged watching them. It seems all they do is stare at one another most of the time. There are two sex scenes between them, but one comes so late in the story it doesn't register as that important. Maybe this film should have been longer, so these two characters and their relationship could have been explored in more depth. I did care about them, but what I got wasn't enough for my liking.
Recently, there have been many gay and LGBT stories. Some of them have been good, and others like Of an Age lack the depth between the characters and the romance it needed to be effective in truly showing the love these two men have for one another. Maybe the writer/director should have chosen one or the other to focus on instead of both. The narrative suffered because of this. All in all, it was an okay film, but it could have been great if some changes were made to the production.
Of an Age hits theaters on February 17.