Love and Death on Long Island 1996
93 mins United Kingdom Director. Richard Kwietniowski
Richard Kwietnioski (Owning Mahony) directs this satirical comedy-drama about fame, obsession, and illusion starring acting great John Hurt. Giles (Hurt) is a widower who loves the cinema, but one day stumbles upon a film very much out of his purview – Hotpants College II, starring Ronnie Bostock (Jason Priestley). Giles finds himself infatuated with Ronnie, researching his career, life, and even his hometown. Giles decides to track down Ronnie in Long Island City in an attempt to meet the young actor. Kwietnioski’s film is a perceptive and biting comedy with doses of darkness and discomfort, yet still attuned to the facets of human desire in its careful portrayal of Giles.
Hurt (The Elephant Man, Midnight Express), best known for his grave and dramatic performances, finds the humour and heart of Giles– he never alienates the audience from the character, but rather helps us understand his longing and confusion. It’s an astonishing performance with equal parts of comedy and pathos.