While adolescence is one of cinema’s favourite subjects (and for various reasons a virtual obsession in gay and lesbian cinema), few films find a balance that feels as if it’s getting to the truth about ‘coming of age’. Bavo Defurne’s North Sea Texas does just that, telling a familiar story yet managing to make it feel fresh, acutely observed and charming. Much of this comes from evoking a strong sense of the early 1970s, great cinematography and excellent performances from a mostly inexperienced cast. It doesn’t hurt either that the strong characters avoid clichés.
Pim (Jelle Florizoone) is a teenager living with his floozy former beauty queen mother in a Belgian coastal town. His mother is more interested in how Pim makes her feel than the boy himself, although this does give him a small amount of freedom to lust after his next door neighbour, Gino (Mathias Vergels). [Read more…]