Dir: Bruce McDonald | Cast: Dylan Authors, Julia Sarah Stone, Molly Parker, Allan Hawco, Cathy Jones, Rhys Bevan-John, Vi Tang, Gary Levert, Stephen McHattie, Max Humphreys, Alex Purdy | Canada | Drama | 93min
Bruce McDonald’s fresh and tender indie is suffused with the foot-loose charm of the ’70s and a freewheeling score from . It follows a couple of young teenagers who take off across Nova Scotia to the coastal town of Sydney during one breezy Canadian summer.
This may not be Bruce McDonald’s most oustanding piece but it’s certainly an endearing one where Daniel MacIvor’s 1976 script captures the zeitgeist of a gentle era where teens were still innocent and squeaky clean but ripe for self-discovery. Kit (Dylan Authors) is fifteen and still seems unsure of his sexuality despite declaring himself openly “a fag” and “a weirdo” he clearly still has some issues to deal with. His grounded bestie Alice (Julia Sarah Stone) is also a budding girlfriend who has the upper hand emotionally speaking, along with his Andy Warhol like ‘spirit guide who appears from time to time, like a jester in a
The two rub along quite easily until it starts to dawn on that Kit is clearly gay. He’s an appealingly decent youngster who is kind but never sappy, offering Alice his hairdryer and looking genuinely crestfallen when she snogs a guy they meet on the beach.
When they eventually fetch up at Kit’s mother’s house the mood turns more serious as it emerges that clearly there are family issues at stake that explain why Kit is living with his father (an appealing macho Allan Hawco) and his strict but open-minded grandmother (Cathy Jones) rather than with his bipolar mother played Molly Parker in a reliably charming and volatile turn.
As the leads Authors Stone are brilliantly mismatched in their peachy-faced cuteness underpinned by a burgeoning realisation of their slightly dysfunctional families – Alice’s parents are separated, while it’s unsure what’s really going on with his. Although he’s unhappy living with his dad, the extent of his mother’s emotional issues indicate that his tricky adolescent state is probably still too fragile to cope with his mother and give her the support that she needs. WEIRDOS is a gently nostalgic coming of age drama that really conjures up the thrilling excitement and gut-churning bewilderment of adoleschence. MT
CANADA NOW FILM SERIES IS SHOWING AT CURZON CINEMAS beginning with a weekend programme from 15th to 18th June at the Curzon Soho. From Saturday July 1st 2017, in celebration of Canada Day, the films will begin a nation–wide tour of cinemas and become available to stream on Curzon Home Cinema.