One of the great joy of being a reviewer is when I get to check something out that might not have popped up on my radar were it not that I was running Paper Phoenix ink. This was the case with Peccadillo films release of Mariano Biasin’s Sublime. Sublime tells the story of a teenage Manuel who is living his life as an aspiring musician with a girlfriend and the typical issue of a teenager when he realizes that his feelings for his best friend Felipe might be more then platonic and has to make a decision about what he is going to do with those emotions.
The first thing I had to before watching the movie was do a little research into LGBTQ+ rights in Argentina, I wanted to be prepared if I the community Manuel was growing up in would have a lot of the prejudices that a lot of other movies have to contain if for instance they take place in like America. Thankfully I learned that Argentina has some of the most forward-looking policies. They were one of the first countries to legalize same sex marriage as well as having very liberal guidelines for transitioning.
Once that was out of the way I could watch the movie and just take in the story it was telling. The first thing I have to say is I loved the way the story was told. The dialogue was not extensive, and a lot of the feelings were express just through the expressions of Manuel, played masterfully by Martin Miller. It really brought me back to being a teenager and not feeling like you could express all the thoughts in your head and the only clue was when your face would betray you from the intensity of the emotions.
The next thing that stood out was how they intertwined the story of the Manuel’s band preparing for their first concert and the songs being written for it into the other parts of the plot. Manuel and Felipe team up to write a song and from the watcher’s perspective it is obviously about Manuel’s feelings for Felipe but Felipe uses it to court a girl unaware of it greater significance.
The best part of the whole film though is how they handle everything in a realistic manner. All the characters are full realized and believable and the ending is not some hokey Hollywood ending but one that provides closure and if not joy then hope and contentment.
If you have a chance you need to see this one out. It is available via On-Demand on PeccadilloPOD, Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Google Play, as well as Curzon Home Cinema and BFI.