Close to Leo
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Top Customer Reviews
Marcel (played by Yannis Lespert) is the 12-year old. He has three older brothers, Leo (Pierre Mignard), Tristan (Rodolphe Pauly), and Pierrot (Jeremie Lippmann), all around 20 years old. After some introductory scenes, the movie really starts with Marcel going off to bed but coming back to hear the father of the family (Dominic Gould) ask the others not to tell Marcel that Leo is HIV-positive, because Marcel is "too young."
Marcel is soon acting a bit strangely and asking indirect questions. The mother (Marie Bunel) evades the questions. The other brothers make hints but back off on telling the story. Marcel does get some reassurance and information from the mother of one of his classmates.
Leo takes Marcel on a trip to Paris, where Leo hopes to rekindle a romance with an ex-boyfriend. Marcel hears from Leo that Leo is indeed very sick and very gay. After a while Marcel is able to figure out that that Leo is also very unhappy with his situation and with taking his meds. Leo puts Marcel on a train back home to Finisterre (western Brittany), saying that Leo is counting on Marcel to lighten the atmosphere back home. Then the movie goes on to its brief, unhappy conclusion.
Family life is filled with touching, hugs, kisses, sharing beds (non-sexually), and apparent good humor. Marcel finds himself having to counterbalance this with the adults' rapid mood swings and sudden distancing. The alternation of childhood intimacy and adult discretion, followed by trauma, finally gets to Marcel.
The boys are frequently not fully dressed, and the older brothers go skinny dipping.Read more ›
Leo (Pierre Mignard) at age 21 is the eldest of four sons of a small family in a little town in Brittany. Leo is gay and is completely accepted for his lifestyle by his parents (father - Dominic Gould and mother Marie Bunel) as well as his younger brothers Tristan (Rodolphe Pauley), Pierrot (Jeremie Lippmann) and the youngest , 11 years old Marcel (Yannis Lespert). When Leo discovers he is HIV positive, his family is supportive and plans to look for the best treatment and care. However, their discussion and closeness to Leo is not shared with Marcel who is 'protected' from AIDS information the family feels would be damaging to Marcel. Problem: Marcel overhears the discussion and is enraged by his exclusion, forcing him into destructive behavior with his little friend. Ultimately Leo accepts his family's advice to seek treatment in Brest and Paris and decides to take Marcel with him on his journey for help (and for a assignation with a previous lover). As Leo's difficulty in facing his disease grows in intensity, he sends Marcel home and the ending of the movie is a sensitive climax best left for the viewer to absorb alone.
Not only is this story one that restores our belief in the sanctity of family, it also presents a potentially cataclysmic topic with such reverence for privacy and for understanding that it becomes a major accomplishment due much more visibility than it has gained.Read more ›
Definitely a "must see" if you get the opportunity.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great storyline, great acting and a all around great movie. French movie with English sub-titles
Worth adding to your collection.
A beautifully judged and finely balanced look at the fall-out when a family is rocked by the news that the eldest brother has HIV, this film looks at the triangle of conflict that... Read morePublished on November 1, 2013 by pipnuts
"Close to Leo" should have been titled "Close to Marcel". Then the title would have had more to do with the story. Marcel is the youngest of four brothers. Read morePublished on September 22, 2012 by Pitbulltje
Close to Leo is a fine film well worth the time to watch.Pierre Mignard does a fine fine job portraying a young man dealing with AIDS. Read morePublished on April 14, 2012 by NAPOLEON
Megabucks aren't needed to make great films. Brilliance is, and those who made this film had it in spades. Read morePublished on November 7, 2011 by Amazon Customer
.....can't. Here we have a loving and supportive family of four sons, a family who so obviously, to us, express a true joy for life and caring for one another. Read morePublished on September 3, 2007 by JUST A REVIEWER2