Naked Delusion: Our Review of ‘Longing’ (2024)

Posted in Theatrical by - June 06, 2024
Naked Delusion: Our Review of ‘Longing’ (2024)

Savi Gabizon’s remake of his film, Longing, takes place in Canada, the temporary home of Daniel Bloch (Richard Gere). An American, he travels here after an ex, Rachel (Suzanne Clement) tells him that they had a child together. That child is Allen (Tomasso Sanelli) who, and light spoilers apparently, dies of what is officially a car accident. Coming to Canada, then, has him discovering that he was so ‘misunderstood’ that his school had to expel him. The school’s principal (Stuart Hughes) excuses himself from speaking about this troubled child so he pushes his luck elsewhere. Let’s back up, actually, and let me explain that I apparently reviewed the original yet have no memory of it. The original isn’t streaming in Canada and the internet purged my review of it outside of a Letterboxd entry.

Watching this remake and it’s crazy plot, though, makes me half-happy that I have no memory of the original. The original, from what I can gather, is about a coloniser parent making excuses for their overgrown dead kid. This remake is the same, where Daniel discovers that Allen stalked his teacher (Diane Kurger) and calls it innocent. Offensively, one of Longing‘s climactic moments is the teacher naked, as part of Allen’s sick fantasy ‘poem’ about her. In describing this, reader, I hope you can understand that this movie exists through the delusional male gaze. The scene with the teacher is also a waste of CGI coming from a director whose maturity is lacking. This movie makes me lucky that my surviving parent gives me tough love and sees that I have flaws.

My surviving parent sees my flaws because he and I have known each other since I came to this world. Maybe this is Longing‘s point, that parents have the tendency to go the other way, towards hero worship. Some parents can’t see their children’s flaws even if they’re right there and it may get worse from a distance. Daniel and Allen are practically strangers, which is probably why the latter can do no wrong for the former. Or maybe all of this comes from mourning, or that both of them may have a genetic mental illness. This armchair diagnosis comes from a plot point that comes later on in the film which I won’t spoil. All I’ll say is what Allen does to his girlfriend’s mother (Shauna MacDonald) is something no one can forgive.

Watch Longing in theatres I guess who cares.

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While Paolo Kagaoan is not taking long walks in shrubbed areas, he occasionally watches movies and write about them. His credentials are as follows: he has a double major in English and Art History. This means that, for example, he will gush at the art direction in the Amityville house and will want to live there, which is a terrible idea because that house has ghosts. Follow him @paolokagaoan on Instagram but not while you're working.
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