›› Lazarus Come Out - Lazzaro Vieni Fuori ‹‹

a short film by Lorenzo Caproni.

2015 | 14 mins | Italy.

the lives of two gay men at opposite ends of the coming out divide.

Dave says:

Religion and homosexuality, it's enough to write a book about and indeed, many have. For it's that two-edged sword that this well-played short from co-writer and director Lorenzo Caproni holds high, here focusing on the life of parish priest Father Walter (Enrico Vandini), who considers himself modern in his views, only for him to end up questioning himself about just how open-minded he truly is?

It all began with the return home of University student Michele (Fabrizio Colica), a likeable young man only too willing to help out with the staging of the annual church play, as equally is his best friend Claudio (Davide Lipari); eager to the point that he's already written a script based on the miracle of the rebirth of Lazarus. Going seemingly against his better judgement, Father Walter allows Claudio and his troupe of aspiring actors to go ahead, only to find himself increasingly drawn to Claudio's good looks during the pre-production work on the set, an attraction that Claudio notices, to the point of teasing the priest with his bare torso, knowing full well that he's looking at him from behind a screen; peeping Tom style. Realizing that he must confront Claudio before events spiral out of control, Claudio is shocked when the priest suggests that he's too "uninhibited" to portray Jesus, in a play that many a Scholar theorizes is all about the unnamed one whom Jesus forever loved; namely - the beloved disciple.

Laced with a series of comical asides courtesy of a narrative that delights in seeing the parish priest squirm in embarrassment with the antics of Claudio and his group of exuberant players, this is but a poignant work that in its own playful style juxtaposes the lives of two gay men at opposite ends of the coming out divide. Yet for all that's going for it, Caproni surprisingly hesitates on pushing the envelope, given the interplay between Father Walter and Claudio does not have the cinematic intensity that it should have had, with the sole gay kiss of the piece, between Michele and Claudio, having been abruptly cut short for reasons unknown.

And that's a shame, given this work could have said so much more and frankly, been far deeper, than what it is, only for any serious undercurrents to have been sacrificed on the altar of lightweight entertainment. All of which makes Father Walter's coming out, sadly left somewhat blowing in the wind. Say no more.

›› available as part of THE ITALIAN BOYS shorts compilation.
›› posted: Tuesday, 16th March, 2021.

Gay Visibility - overt. 
Nudity - from the waist up. 
Overall - file under ... 3 stars. 

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