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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 6 February 2008
The main issue here is honesty. W ith oneself, with ones family and with the world.Laurent(Cyrille Thouvenin),is a 23 year old gay college student who is on the verge of loosing his place the school as he goes through a crisis over the death of his gay cousin Marc. To retain his place,the school director offers an apprenticship at a Garden Centre owned and managed by Cedric(Stephane Guerin Tillie), an openly gay young professional and his totally accepting mother Emma (Eva Darlan). The Garden Centre also houses Cedric's research laboratory where Laurent takes up his apprenticeship. What starts as a trainee/mentor relationship develops into love as both are obviously attracted to each other. The problems start when Cedric wants to take the relationship further by wanting to meet Laurent's parents who are totally unaware of their son's sexual orientation-thanks to his flatmate Carole (Caroline Veyt)who also obliges as his alibi girlfriend. Laurent's insistence in remaining "in the closet" towards his family puts not only a strain on their young relationship but also starts to unnerve Carole who realises that Laurent's hesitation is also due to his desperate attempt to "remain" heterosexual for his parents sake. There are accusations,recriminations and ugly altercations until this train headed towards destruction and mutual misery is brought to a halt by the person who cares the most for both Cedric and Laurent.
This is by far the best gay coming out story I have seen. Stripped of Hollywood cliches and told in a very straightforward, unsentimental, realistic and marvelously crafted manner (as only the french film makers can), this story brings home the point of the coming out dilemma that gay people the world over are confronted with. It is a sweet love story without being saccharine. The actors/actresses are all great and the chemistry between Thouvenin and Guerin Tillie just makes the screen spark and sizzle. Six million people in France saw this film when it was aired on french television. Entertaining as well as thought provoking, it is a testimony to -as Laurent says "... not a question of being gay or heterosexual, it is just a question of love". This is a film definitely worth watching and owning.
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on 23 September 2006
It is one of the most beautiful films I've ever seen. I adore this film. The story, the acting, the characters are truly first rate and Christian Faure is such a good director. No doubt what French cinema always does best is telling small intimate stories with warmth and intimacy like this movie. They are always a good choice for a cosy night in. I highly recommend this film and I love to watch this film over and over again especially the scene where Cedric tells Laurent that he loves him in the car. So wonderfully romantic and so the saying goes "love changes everything".
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Juste une question d'amour is an amazing film: taut, moving, and very well acted. Fortunately the kind of situation shown is not as common as it was, but it is one of the best depictions of parental intolerance and the misery it can cause - the extremity of that unhappiness to the point of real crisis. Laurent appears to handle things better than he really does. He lives with a girl, Carole, who his parents believe to be his girlfriend, but thinks he is happy being gay and simply not telling them. When he meets the slightly older Cedric, and the attraction is mutual, not only do we see love blossoming in a magical way, but also its auto-destruction inside Laurent's head, who cannot tell his parents. There is a lot of heartache, but the film is well worth hanging in there with ... you don't really have much choice, it's so compelling. The three young people are all amazing, Cyrille Thouvenin and Stephan Guerin-Tillie are superb as the troubled lovers, and Cedric's mother Emma, played by Eva Darlan, is also superb - in fact Laurent's parents are all too believable ... The plot is very well contrived so that Emma tells a lie near the end - a marvellous touch - its effect is wonderful to see ...
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on 16 March 2017
First of all, I'm not a big fan of French movies; this movie has changed my thoughts about it. It's a very delicate story, a story of coming out in a family who doesn't understand it. Also a perfect picture of who a person can struggle on school, with family and friendship and how to love. A must see movie, almost timeless you can see more then one time.
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on 19 January 2015
Well acted and authentic. Glad I purchased after all.
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on 26 September 2007
Initially I felt a bit suspicious that this was one of those sorts of movies that just rely on stereotypes and derivative situations to explore gay life. I was proved wrong however - this is a really lovely movie that, I think, accurately depicts gay life with its complications and complexes. It's also very funny, sweet and inspiring.
The tale depicts Laurent, who is an under-achieving student since the death of his gay cousin Marc who was rejected by his family. Laurent loves his parents dearly, doesn't want to hurt them with the news he is gay and doesn't want to be without their love and support. However, at university he maintains his independence because of his fears that one day he may be out on his own. After being offered a last chance to redeem himself in his studies, by taking up an internship at Cedric's garden centre and research lab, Laurent and Cedric begin a relationship that is depicted with such realism and poignancy. However, there are issues about Laurent's unwillingness to 'accept' who he is and the difficulties in the relationship are explored really well. Cedric won't accept Laurent's willingness to allow his parents to believe he is heterosexual and that he and Carole (his housemate) are an item. Visiting Laurent's house, strictly in the guise of Laurent's research leader, Cedric tenderly rejects Laurent's advances and makes it clear that he won't lie to remain in the relationship. This is really quite a powerful point in the film.
The main character, Laurent, is particularly well drawn and is a very realistic character, in the way he feels about his sexuality and the secrets he keeps from his family. The older man whom he enters a relationship with, Cedric, is also an excellently realistic character. The actors playing Laurent (Cyrille Thouvenin) and Cedric (Stéphan Guérin-Tillié) both deliver very confident performances. Guérin-Tillié particularly plays his role to perfection and is so sweet and sensitive, when he comforts a sobbing Laurent and whispers 'Je t'aime'.
The supporting cast were all very apt and the woman playing Laurent's mother was great in depicting her character's complete shock and dismay on learning of her son's sexuality. Carole, Laurent's housemate, is very beautiful, funny and supportive as the best friend who harbour's unsustainable feelings of love for Laurent.
Visually, it was also very pleasant throughout and the musical score was fine. It dealt with lots of the `usual' issues about being gay in Western Europe but in an interesting and original way. The moving relationship at its heart really shows how the influence of someone and their love can have a real effect on someone's life, and the wonder of being able to fully accept who you are. Definitely deserving of 5 stars and certainly worth seeing, by any audience.
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on 19 May 2006
This French made film is brilliant.

I know some people may be put off by the fact that the film is in subtitles, but seriously, don't let it put you off!

After a minute of two, the subtitles are forgetton as you follow the story.

Laurent is 23 and a student. He's studying agriculture, but finds it difficult to focus on his studies. Moreso since his cousin, also gay, died of aids. His cousin died with his family hating him for being ''unnatural'' and because of this Laurent is torn between wanting the love and acceptance of his family (though knowing there's little chance of getting it if they discover he's gay) and being angry with them for how they treate his cousin.

Laurents best friend, Carole, is his cover. Whilst his family continue under the happy illusion that Laurent and Carole are in love, they are infact just friends.

Laurent is soon interested in Cedric, a man completely comfortable in his sexuality. Cedric is out to his mother (his only family) and will not hide who he is for anyone.

This is where Laurent and Cedric clash and what the film hangs on.

I won't tell the rest of the story, except to say it's excellent.

I bought it expecting a decent film and found it to be one of the best I've seen in a long, long time.

It is now among my favourite films.
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VINE VOICEon 15 September 2007
I am not normally one for this type of film - where romantic love can happen fully and completely within a couple of hours - but this film really touched me. I think the Amazon synopsis is a bit too brief, so I will try to elaborate;

Laurent is a young, gay student sharing an appartment with Carole and studying at an agricultural college. Laurent has kept his sexuality a secret from his parents; when his cousin came out to his family, they (and Laurent's parents) blocked him out of their lives - even refusing to visit him in hospital in the few weeks he had left to live after contracting Hepatitis. To avoid such a reaction, Laurent and Carole pretend they are an item.

Laurent is letting his studies fall behind, so is sent off for an internship with (the rather ruggedly handsome) Cedric, a government-funded researcher who lives and works with his mother, running the garden centre/nursery initiated by his deceased father . In the close, private quarters of Cedric's home-based laboratory, Laurent soon falls for Cedric. Time soon puts pressure on Laurent to be honest with his parents, but the experience of his cousin's treatment adds anxiety. From here the story builds.

The film surprised me with the level of intolerance shown by the family - it was presented as fairly normal, so it would appear French society is much less tolerant than the UK - but the handling of the relationships was well balanced and didn't seem as contrived as other films. There are a few, very mild, sex scenes, so I would recommend this as a 'safe' film for any parents or friends who might want to understand the difficulty involved with coming out.

My only problem with the film was a technical blunder - the english subtitles are peculiarly arranged so the top line is placed very high up and interferes a little with the picture so it would be good if manufacturers could sort this out, but it isn't too annoying if you are just renting it.
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on 10 April 2007
A simple tail of finding true love. This film is so well done on all levels; brilliantly acted, shot and told. A refreshing change to see a hopeful and happy ending for the two male lovers.
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on 29 May 2008
A very difficult film in places - the level of family rejection sometimes is quite terrible and shocking. The difficulties in overcoming this for all concerned is undoubtedly true to life for many families, but the fact this process of understanding and coming to terms with being gay does eventually work out and that there is a very clear feeling of love between the couple from the beginning to the end of the film, despite their own tensions (caused by both the self and familial rejection) make this a thoroughly captivating film. The film remains realistic though - people cannot adjust to everything overnight and total understanding and acceptance probably will never happen for many in the family - they'll get used to it but there are compromises to be made in one's dreams and hopes as a parent and one's expectations of straight family members if you are gay. The two attractive leads are excellent in their roles. This is a typically wonderfully made and acted French film, with beautiful photography, a real sense of atmosphere and place and a realistic portrayal of human beings and their inter-relations. Highly recommend to all who like great French cinema and moving and thoughtful depictions of gay life.
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