Wednesday, August 03, 2016

My Review of Looking: The Movie (2016)

Written by Andrew Haigh And Michael Lannan
Directed by Andrew Haigh

Patrick: "I came here to close a chapter"

Despite some unfortunate ratings and HBO inevitably calling time on this modest show after only two seasons, a movie was still commissioned to offer fans of the series some closure and it somewhat managed to do that in the space of 90 minutes.

Taking place at least nine months after the end of the second season, Patrick has returned to San Francisco (he relocated, quit his job, broke up with Kevin etc) just in time for Agustin and Eddie's wedding and within this movie, there was a lot of unresolved issues that needed to be resolved.

First of all, the break up with Kevin. It was messy and thanks to their shared app, they've still had to occasionally contact each other. We learned in this movie that Kevin got back together with his ex but that didn't stop him from giving Patrick a few home truths as well as the acknowledgment of some of his own shortcomings. Fans hoping for a reunion between the pair of them will be somewhat disappointed but overall, closure was achieved between the two of them nonetheless.

Then there was Patrick and Ritchie. At the end of the second season, Ritchie cut Patrick's hair and there was a hint of a reunion of sorts. At the start of this one, they're on good terms but Ritchie's boyfriend Brady is still around and has managed to become even more annoying than before. Of course time around, instead of mutual passive aggression to each other, both Patrick and Brady were somewhat more vocal in their mutual dislike for one another.

While I didn't like the idea of either going on about to act as a gay man (Brady has some serious projection issues), I did like the end result. Ritchie did us all a favour (and himself) and dumped Brady before getting back together with Patrick. I wasn't actually expecting a reunion between the pair of them but the way the movie played it was spot on and helped to end things on a really strong note.

Of course when Patrick wasn't dealing with his two prominent exes, he was also having sex with a fit younger guy named Jimmy (Michael Rosen) but there was also a subplot where his sexual past with Dom got some exploration. At one point, the two of them got close to having sex with each other once again but ultimately that storyline fizzled out before anything more pressing could happen with it.

Then there was the wedding itself. I haven't been shy in my love for Agustin and Eddie as a couple (they were the best part of the second season for me) and I've loved the growth in Agustin's character as well. Here though we got some mutual wedding jitters from the pair and a part of me was dreading that they'd split but again, this was a good one for the shipper in me as their wedding went ahead and then the somewhat hedonistic-lite reception do that followed. That in itself is why this movie did so well for me.

- Nice guest appearance from Tyne Daly in this movie. She was the one to marry Agustin/Eddie. Cleve Jones also appeared as himself in this one.
- Some of the music choices in this movie were superb, especially with the use of Britney Spears, the Housemartins, New Order and John Grant.
- Was Doris pregnant in this movie or trying to? I have to admit, I tuned out a little there and I do like the character. It's a pity we didn't see Dom hook up with someone else in this movie too.
- Nice references to the likes of The Goonies, Saw and Brokeback Mountain to name a few.

Now this was a satisfying of tying up some loose end. Looking: The Movie gave nearly every character a satisfying conclusion and while you can argue the focus was a little Patrick heavy at times (like the series had been), I am thankful that HBO allowed the show to end on a very strong note with this movie. Absolutely superb.

Rating: 9 out of 10

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