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Billy Porter and Luke Evans performances elevate Our Son above movie of the week fare



Disclaimer :Our Son doesn't shy away from love scenes involing same sex couples.


Director Bill Oliver's latest film, Our Son from Vertical, delves into the complexities of custody battles. Oliver also co-writes the screenplay with Peter Nickowitz. Nicky (Luke Evans), a book publisher devoted to his work, lives with his husband Gabriel (Billy Porter), a former actor and stay-at-home dad, and their eight-year-old Son, Owen. 


Gabriel's love for Owen knows no bounds - it consumes him entirely. Gabriel's partner, Nicky, reciprocates this love and holds Gabriel in the highest regard. However, Gabriel has been harboring a sense of dissatisfaction with their marriage for some time and has reached a difficult decision - to file for a divorce. 


Their decision leads to a custody battle over their child, forcing Gabriel, Nicky, and their Son to confront the changing reality of their lives and their love for each other. The once-unbreakable bond between Gabriel and Nicky is put to the test as they both struggle with the emotional toll of the divorce and the custody battle. 


Throughout this complex process, they both realize that their love for their Son is the most important thing, and they must come to terms with the new dynamics of their relationship. Ultimately, they must find a way to move forward while still maintaining their love for each other and their child.


Our Son starts by firmly introducing us to our two leads, their everyday routine, and their equally gay friends. One of the things I want to commend the director and writer on is the avoidance of stereotypes and instead focusing on human archetypes. The dialogue between Nicky and Gabriel, when they decide to call their marriage, is genuine, and anyone in a long relationship will relate to both men's viewpoints.

 

Billy Porter is good in the role of Gabriel and alludes to being a caring father, while Luke Evans tones down his tough-guy bravado and brings some emotional depth to his character of Nicky. Some may find the film as TV movie fare, but at its core, it is a genuine character study, offering a nuanced portrayal of its protagonists as they grapple with their struggles and conflicting emotions. 


The performances by Porter and Evans are raw and profoundly affecting, as they authentically capture the heartache and resilience of their respective characters. The supporting cast offers typical roles found in a film such as this. I also commend the director for the sensitive portrayal of the impact of divorce on children, as young Owen becomes a central figure in the emotional tug-of-war between his parents. The film does not shy away from the pain and confusion experienced by a child caught in parental discord, adding emotional depth to the narrative.


The movie's screenplay is thought-provoking and insightful. It tackles love, responsibility, and personal growth themes with a rare combination of sensitivity and honesty. The direction is influential yet understated, allowing the story and performances to take center stage.


While Our Son won't win any awards, I do recommend the film for fans of family dramas.


Our Son opens in select theaters today and is released on VOD on December 15

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