The Lost Boys Movie Review: Neither Gender Nor The Sex, Just Intense Love

Zeno Graton's The Lost Boys portrays forbidden love between teenagers in a correctional centre, showcasing subtle emotions amidst restrictive circumstances, transcending physical boundaries with poignant grace and nuanced storytelling.

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The Lost Boys

Critic's Ratings

starstarstarstarstar

3.5

Drama

Duration

1 hr 23 mins
The Lost Boys Movie Review Neither Gender Nor The Sex Just Intense Love
The Lost Boys Movie Review: Neither Gender Nor The Sex, Just Intense Love

About The Lost Boys

Belgian director Zeno Graton’s The Lost Boys is a quietly accomplished film about a love that erupts between two teenagers in a correctional centre.
Moving away from the brutal violence of other prison dramas including the recent Bosco, The Lost Boys (Le Paradis in the original) shows the reformatory system as productive and nurturing rather than violent and destructive. There are no brutal security guards and predatory inmates. The angst is all self-created.
When we meet Joe (Khalil Gharbia) we can see he is deeply troubled. His days in the correctional centre are numbered. He is happy to leave, although we don’t know where he will go next.
The arrival of William (Julian De Saint Jean) triggers feelings in Joe he never thought existed. Joe no longer wants to leave.
This is a film that celebrates dormant emotions without fireworks, although admittedly there is a beautiful moment of silently shared empathy between the lovers with fireworks erupting in the distance. That apart, there are no epic manifestations of love or otherwise.
This is forbidden love in the truest sense. No physical proximity is allowed, not even a touch. And yet we feel the desperate passion between Joe and William in almost every frame, even when they are yards apart in the canteen or on the playing field…Their mutual passion envelopes every frame.
The poet Gulzar once told me that true love transcends the body, so much so that you don’t notice the physicality of a love sequence. This is the depth of the love shared between the two boys in The Lost Boys (an ironic title that, since they find love although they are supposedly lost). There is a sequence where the Joe and William put their hands on the wall dividing their two cells and feel the vibes that cross from one to the other.
What could have been corny in lesser hands, is sublime in The Lost Boys. The prison as a liberating venue has never been imagined with such subtlety and grace.
“This is not the place for this,” the kind counsellor Sophie (Eye Hydara) tells Joe gently when she discovers his feelings for William. How do you explain that to the heart?
End of Article

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