Kwietniowski's feature debut, a marvellous adaptation of Gilbert Adair's novel, tells the hilariously unlikely tale of the obsession harboured by reclusive old fart London novelist Giles De'ath (Hurt) for hunky but not very talented American teen pin-up Ronnie Bostock (Priestley) after seeing him in an appalling movie. Unquestioningly hetero until his wife died, and barely cognisant of the modern technological world, let alone Long Island (where he fetches up in an attempt to meet his unwitting beloved), De'ath is simultaneously embarrassed, confused, tormented and rejuvenated by his infatuation. A genuinely literate, affectionate fish-out-of-water comedy, which never overplays its Death in Venice references, the film benefits hugely from Hurt's superb performance and from Kwietniowski's lovely parodies of straight-to-video fare.
Love and Death on Long Island
Cast and crew