Chris & Don. A Love Story
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- 16:9 anamorphic transfer, formatted for widescreen televisions
- More of Chris and Don's home movies, including footage from the sets of The Rose Tattoo (1955) and King Vidor's War and Peace (1956)
- Deleted sequences with Don Bachardy, including an interview on gay marriage
- Deleted interviews with actress Gloria Stuart (Titanic), filmmaker John Boorman (Point Blank), and actress Leslie Caron (Gigi)
- "Don on Chris": An 8-page printed monograph of Bachardy's paintings of Isherwood
- U.S. theatrical trailer
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hearing impaired
- Stereo and Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtracks
Top Customer Reviews
Directors Guido Santi and Tina Mascara have culled an impressive amount of archival footage of these singular artists, including scenes with W. H. Auden, Tennessee Williams, Igor Stravinsky, and mixed them with interviews and comments from Leslie Caron, James White, Gloria Stuart and John Boorman. The wisest move made by these filmmakers, one which elevates and imbues this work with genuine legitimacy, was to focus their camera on Bachardy and to have excerpts from Isherwood's diaries read by actor Michael York.
They met on a California beach in 1952 when Bachardy was 16. Isherwood was the celebrated author of The Berlin Stories (not yet famous as the source of "Cabaret", or the author of "A Single Man" and "Christopher and His Kind"). Their relationship didn't coalesce for a few years, but once it did, the two became inseparable. Bachardy is brutally candid about the relationship, how they were viewed by friends and family; but more importantly, how they interacted with one another, the stresses and strains of coming from different countries, classes and generations.
Bachardy, forever youthful in appearance, details a brief period when he insisted the relationship be "open" to provide him an opportunity to sew his wild oats.Read more ›
In 1952, Don Barchardy meets author and Hollywood celebrity Christopher Isherwood on a beach in Santa Monica, and a relationship is born. What's remarkable, among many remarkable things in this story, is that Chris was 30 years older than Don, who was just coming out of his adolescence. They lived together, for over 30 years, unreservedly and openly as a couple, amidst the rampant homophobia and discrimination that existed, even in "liberal" California.
The life wanders through the current life of Don as his reminiscences about his great love, the life of Chris before meeting Don (with particular emphasis on Chris' time in Berlin, which eventually spawned "Cabaret") and their life together. The filmmakers framed the story beautifully with animals; that being, Chris and Don referred to themselves in the context of animal personas, Chris being an old horse, Don an affectionate cat, and they sprinkle delightful animation throughout the movie. The effect is charming, and adds a poignant punctuation mark at the end.
Perhaps the most moving part of the entire story occurs at the end, as Don recounts Chris' last days, and his endless drawing of his love. The pictures haunt, the sadness looms. It's then you get the sense of the realness of their relationship, how real all relationships are (despite conservative groups' attempts to thwart them), and the depth of what they meant to each other.
Don's honesty drives this movie. He holds nothing back as he recounts his life, as well as the life of Chris. You have to admire someone for opening his heart so much to a camera crew; I doubt many of us would be willing to have such clarity.Read more ›
While the film will possibly appeal to a broad-minded general audience, it will be of special interest, I think, to gay men (and possibly lesbian) viewers. For one thing, the film shows the way homosexuals in days past had to define their relationships for themselves. Before gay marriage (with its implied monogamy) became a cause celebre, men like Chris and Don needed to consciously craft their own understanding of what they expected of one another. Don speaks frankly about both being taken to Hollywood parties openly as Isherwood's partner/date (and enduring homophobic comments from Joseph Cotton) and about his interest in seeing men outside their relationship. Yet somehow their relationship with one another was primary and mutually fulfilling. It is also interesting from the perspective of the thirty year difference in their ages (Don was barely legal when they started their relationship).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I learned a lot about these two people whom I never heard of before. Great story.Published 3 months ago by Fotini Poulimenos
Very well put together. I loved seeing the art work of Don as well as all of the early film footage.Published 3 months ago by Michele S. King
A sympathetic telling of an intergenerational love story -- very provocative and well done.Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
Very nicely told by the remaining member of the relationship, Don Bachardy. This documentary gives lots of insight into homosexuality during the 50's and 60's. Enjoyable!Published 3 months ago by Joyce A Whittle
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