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Keep the Lights On 2012

UNRATED CC

KEEP THE LIGHTS ON chronicles an emotional and sexually charged journey of love and addiction. In 1997 New York, filmmaker Erik and closeted lawyer Paul meet through a casual encounter and soon find themselves embroiled in a decade-long relationship.

Starring:
Thure Lindhardt, Zachary Booth
Runtime:
1 hour, 42 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Drama
Director Ira Sachs
Starring Thure Lindhardt, Zachary Booth
Supporting actors Marilyn Neimark, Paprika Steen, Sebastian La Cause, Julianne Nicholson, Sarah Hess, Roberta Kirshbaum, Jamie Petrone, Maria Dizzia, Stella Schnabel, Jodie Markell, Justin Reinsilber, James Bidgood, Souleymane Sy Savane, John Michael Cox Jr., Henry Arango, Agosto Machado, Ed Vassallo, Miguel del Toro
Studio Music Box Films
MPAA rating Unrated (Not Rated)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
True love can be difficult to realize in the face of innumerable and unknown life impediments. These impediments, along with self-inflicted wounds from the emotional DNA we all carry (and which often expresses itself in relationship(s) with others), leaves these two people blissful, vulnerable and ignorant. Drug addiction or an addiction of any kind is anathema to any relationship(s). Often there is the enabler/co-dependent and the addicted one, who doesn't perceive the danger ahead. We get all of this in Keep the Lights On. It is a roller coaster of discovery for both of the individuals in the relationship, fascinating and heartbreaking to watch, but never vapid. Over a decade, the individuals in this story really do try to find a way to make their relationship work and it was refreshing to see the enormous, even herculean effort the two principals in this love drama expend in order to save each other and their relationship. The acting is superb and the attention to detail in the direction (showing not telling), draws the viewers into the depths of what two individuals may experience on the road to finding themselves and one another.
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Format: DVD
When I watched this film I kept thinking, "How real this is as far as relationships go!" The story may be ordinary (drug addicted lover can't give up the drugs and realize the real prize of his life), but this story tells it with a twist. I truly loved the movie. The people who say that nothing happens in this movie must not have stayed with it to the end. Thure Lindhart plays a convincing role as a young gay male, Eric, looking for sex and unexpectedly finding romance. He falls in love, but his lover has a secret: an addiction to crack. At first they share the drug together as an overture to love making, but eventually Paul, the addicted lover, cannot move on, much less realize that the most important thing in is life is actually his lover, Eric, and not the drugs he uses. Their decade-long relationship is a veritable roller-coaster (as most are in real life) and Eric goes above and beyond trying to save their relationship, trying to help Paul kick the habit and realize how much Eric loves him. There are scenes that clearly show how much both men love each other, and their lovemaking is erotic and touching (though there is no full-frontal nudity per se). There are also some unexpected scenes that add a twist to this not-so-uncommon tale of jinxed love -- such as the scene where Eric is compelled to watch while his lover Paul is screwed by a male prostitute while he, Eric, sits on the bed next to them during the act. I found the acting to be quite believable, and overall, the movie definitely drew me into their unfortunate love affair. When Eric finally realizes he cannot continue down this path, he cuts the cord to the one man he has truly loved for the past 10 years.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
I watched this film at Sundance and then again at Tribeca after it had won the Teddy Award at Berlin. I think the film is superbly done, and it approaches a relationship without judging its characters. It is also extremely well acted, and the lensing is fantastic, with a grainy beauty and a cinematography that reflects the 10 year journey the characters go through.

Great Film,
Highly Recommend it.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a very well done portrayal of the degradation of a person who has taken to very heavy drugs and it's effects on those around him. It is also a record of loyalty and love of one person to the other until even that is stretched beyond its limits, through the endless programs of detoxification. 'Smack' will never let go of an addict--it seems to go to molecular level and can't be gotten out.
The story was well told by the actors, particularly by Thure Lindhardt and Zachary Booth. The final scenes were, as they should be,
an ending as it had to be, Erik finally realising that he could do no more. In fact, he had well and truly found that Paul wasn't the person he loved at all. Paul had been a stranger for some time--Erik's friends had tried to tell him--and as we all know, love makes one want to overcome all difficulties, and it takes a very strong person to finally admit he has failed. But at least he had tried for 9 years. At the end I was, hoping that Erik would find find someone else. I wonder if he did? I liked this film for its honesty.
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Format: DVD
It's NYC in the late 1990's, where Erik (Thure Lindhardt) is a budding filmmaker from Denmark, supported by his family while working on a documentary for the past four years. While trolling for sex on a phone line, he meets Paul (Zachary Booth), and closeted attorney for a publisher, they discover a sexual and emotional connection, and eventually move in together. Erik is aware, early on, that Paul smokes crack cocaine, but is unaware of how his addiction is growing, to the point where he eventually disappears from his job and their apartment. They manage to stay together for close to a decade, despite Paul's stints in rehab and subsequent failures to maintain his sobriety. Erik sees Paul's failures as a reflection of his own inability to follow-through on things (like his film), and becomes obsessed with "saving" Paul, despite friends' advice and common sense telling him it just may not happen, despite his best efforts and intentions.

Based loosely on a personal experience by the movie's director/co-writer, Ira Sacks, the film's subject matter is obviously rather dark and depressing at times, though realistic for someone going through a rather masochistic relationship with an addict. The acting and technical quality are first rate, although the film's pacing seems to bog down at times, suggesting that more editing would have been an improvement. Film is unrated (would be an R for sexual content, though no complete nudity), and appeared in several film festivals (including Sundance). DVD extras include "Making of" short, deleted scenes, commentary and auditions. Although this film has gotten a lot of attention, I didn't find it that impressive, and am being generous with three stars out of five.
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