27 April 2017

At the movies: A Closer Walk With Thee.


Four kids, more than teens but flailing toward adulthood with uncertain grasp, have set up a small evangelical outreach congregation in a sketchy neighborhood where they’re in over their heads. Tensions are high, and it feels like nobody’s working toward the same set of specific objectives. Fortunately, for a little while, the general purpose of outreach is keeping things afloat. Until desire begins to rear both of its heads, and that ramshackle balance is shattered by the collision of fear, lust, rage, doubt, pagan gang activity, and Christian rock.

This film shocked me. And I don't shock easily. As a cautionary tale for evangelicals and gay boys, as an origin story, as an unconventional possession narrative, as the next BDSM scene you're going to try out when no one is looking, and as a horror film where horror means something different to each of the characters, A CLOSER WALK WITH THEE is a special film, as well as a queer film, a lacerating character study, and above all a sensitive, resonant, and viscerally shocking arrival on the genre film scene. I hope you enjoy it. And if you can't enjoy it, I hope it upsets you. And if it can't upset you, then I hope it makes you have Mulholland Drive-style weird dreams where you have to come to terms with the absolute moral truth of yourself.

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