105 mins, 2022, Belgium-France, Digital, Subtitled

Best friends Léo (Eden Dambrine) and Rémi (Gustav De Waele) are enjoying a blissful summer in rural Belgium, where Léo’s parents have a chrysanthemum farm; the preteen boys share every aspect of their lives, homes, and even a bed on their frequent sleepovers.

On the first day of a new school term, surrounded by unfamiliar classmates, the boys cling together, prompting one well-meaning girl to ask if they are a couple. Having never considered this possibility, Léo responds defensively that they are merely ‘close, like brothers’, and from that moment, he grows distant from Rémi, shielding himself accusations of homosexuality by joining the ice hockey team, oblivious to his friend’s hurt and confusion. Unequipped to deal with the maelstrom of new emotions caused by Léo’s sudden and unexplained rejection, Rémi grows more isolated and withdrawn. Close is a delicate, extraordinarily moving story of innocence lost.

Notes by David O’Mahony

Book Tickets

Thursday 13th