Close to Leo | Chicago Reader

Close to Leo

When young Leo tells his family that he is HIV positive, they decide to keep it from his 12-year-old brother, Marcel. Marcel intuits something's wrong anyway, and we share his anguish as he tries to get everyone to be honest. Director Christoph Honore employs tight, almost claustrophobic framing to great effect, getting us inside the family dynamic. The hitch is that this French family is so physically affectionate that it is hard not to read an incestuous subtext into their actions—the two brothers, for example, seek emotional comfort by sleeping in the same bed, curled around each other. Perhaps Honore had nothing untoward in mind, but it's difficult to get past it. In French with subtitles. 90 min.

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