Men In Love

  • 1990
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

The use of New Age philosophy to combat the emotional impact AIDS has on victims' loved ones is explored in this low-budget, independent, and largely unsuccessful film. Steven (Doug Self) is a sensitive young man living in San Francisco who has just lost his lover, Victor, to AIDS. Steven holds a "send-off" ceremony at which Victor's friends gather to share...read more

Where to Watch

Available to Stream

  • Watch on
Rating:

The use of New Age philosophy to combat the emotional impact AIDS has on victims' loved ones is explored in this low-budget, independent, and largely unsuccessful film. Steven (Doug Self) is a sensitive young man living in San Francisco who has just lost his lover, Victor, to AIDS. Steven

holds a "send-off" ceremony at which Victor's friends gather to share memories of him; it ends with each person releasing a red balloon into the sky as a symbol of Victor's freedom from the mortal world. Steven follows Victor's request to take his ashes to Maui, where Victor's former lover, Robert

(Emerald Starr), has founded a New Age community. While Robert occupies himself with preparing for various ceremonies, Steven is left to deal with the loss of Victor. Soon, Steven loses his patience with the evasive Robert and admonishes him for failing to visit Victor during the end of their

friend's life. Steven also angrily reminds Robert that he never had to deal with the day-to-day problems of taking care of an AIDS patient. Steven's misgivings about Robert and skepticism about the New Age philosophy are partly diverted by his growing relationship with Peter (Joe Tolbe), the

Hawaiian gardener at the community. Peter seems to be the only one who is willing to help Steven deal with his grief on a human level, setting aside all of the ethereal rhetoric. Their closeness grows until the two are ready to consummate their relationship, but there are some hitches. The main

problem is that Steven has never taken an AIDS test and does not know if he is infected. Peter shows Steven how one couple has dealt with a similar situation: Rocco (Carlo Incerto) has decided to stay with Jonathan (James A. Taylor) and have a full physical relationship with him, even though

Jonathan is HIV positive. Peter decides that he is willing to accept the consequences if Steven is found to be infected. After a few weeks at the community, Steven starts to get along better with Robert, who admits that he is terrified of death, which is why he, too, has never had the AIDS test

and why he has built the cloistered community where death never shows its face. Receiving the news that one of his friends in San Francisco has just died, Steven must decide whether to stay on the island with Peter or go back to the mainland and pick up the pieces of his life. After a night of

meditation and some primal screaming in a cave, Steven decides to return to San Francisco. Robert is then seen having a blood test, and there is another brief ceremony before Steven scatters Victor's ashes off a cliff.

MEN IN LOVE has an interesting premise; however, the production is bogged down by a poorly written script, undefined characters, and unconvincing performances by a cast made up primarily of nonprofessional actors. We never learn anything about Steven aside from his relationships with the other

characters; we don't really know what his life was like in San Francisco, so his dilemma in choosing whether or not to leave Maui lacks impact. Moreover, Peter's decision to consummate his relationship with Steven does not seem to be as painstakingly thought out as it ought to be under the

circumstances. Perhaps because MEN IN LOVE was originally shot on video and then transferred to film, the supposedly paradisiacal location looks relatively bleak and uninviting. While the main purpose here seems to be to inspire the audience, the film is regrettably not up to the task and provokes

more unintended laughs than spiritual awareness. (Adult situations, nudity, sexual situations.)

Cast & Details See all »

  • Released: 1990
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: The use of New Age philosophy to combat the emotional impact AIDS has on victims' loved ones is explored in this low-budget, independent, and largely unsuccessful film. Steven (Doug Self) is a sensitive young man living in San Francisco who has just lost h… (more)

Show More »

Trending TonightSee all »