being 17 is a great movie. Set in the French Alps, it’s a coming-out story that is quite compelling. Blond Damien and Black Thomas are both 17, enrolled at the same high school in their small town. Damien’s mom is a doctor; his dad is in the military. Thomas was adopted by his French parents, and he nurses an underlying insecurity because of that. Yet his resent is most often expressed in homophobic physical confrontations—against Damien.

When Damien’s mother starts treating Thomas’ pregnant mother, the teens are forced into a relationship that Thomas resists at every turn. He continues his aggression against Damien, even though Damien is able to hold his own. Because Thomas’ house is high in the mountains, and since his mother needs bed rest in the town’s hospital to help with her pregnancy, Thomas is compelled to move in with Damien’s family for a brief time. The pressures mount, but one of the joys of this movie was how Damien’s self confidence prevailed.

The story is a very pleasant journey, actually. The two boys continue to harbor animosity toward each other, while simultaneously forming a friendship. The whole progression was beautifully written, and wonderfully acted.

The actors who play both Damien (Kacey Mottet Klein) and Thomas (Corentin Fila) are quite easy on the eyes, and I found myself sighing with approval, more than once. The other scenery was spectacular. I mean, the Alps, okay? The supporting actors were also very good.

This was a high-end kind of indie movie. Definitely worth your time, if you don’t mind the subtitles. [Available on iTunes, and Amazon Prime]

Released: 2016
Language: French, with subtitles

Sean’s Ratings (Scale: 1 - 7):
Production/cinematography: 6
Writing/Story: 6.5
Acting: 6.5
Eye Candy: 5.5

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