We shared the first stills last year, but now we have the first teaser for an promising upcoming Sundance in-competition drama Keep the Lights On. From director Ira Sachs (Married Life) the film stars Thure Lindhardt, Zachary Booth, Julianne Nicholson, Souleymane Sy Savane, Paprika Steen and is an “an autobiographically inspired story of a passionate long-term relationship between two men driven by addiction and secrets but bound by love and hopefulness.”
THR has the trailer below, along with an extended interview with the director who says, “I hope that people feel like they’ve gone through the journey of a long, deep, complex, troubled, rich, passionate relationship — that’s all I’m setting out to do.” Judging from this emotionally stirring teaser he is on the right track to succeed. I have yet to see last year’s indie hit Weekend, but this seems to cover similar territory with cross-over in style, only spanning an entire relationship. I can’t wait to see it this month.
Keep the Lights On chronicles the emotionally and sexually charged journey through the love, addiction, and friendship of two men. Documentary filmmaker Erik and closeted lawyer Paul meet through a casual encounter, but they find a deeper connection and become a couple. Individually and together, they are risk takers—compulsive, and fueled by drugs and sex. In an almost decade-long relationship defined by highs, lows, and dysfunctional patterns, Erik struggles to negotiate his own boundaries and dignity and to be true to himself.
Keep the Lights On is shot with a grainy beauty that transports us to its late ’90s setting. It resonates with textures of New York City, accentuated by disco beats and a mournful cello, both from musician Arthur Russell’s eclectic catalog. Director Ira Sachs’s fearlessly personal screenplay is anchored by Danish actor Thure Lindhardt, who embodies Erik’s isolation and vulnerability with a gentle presence. Harrowing and romantic, visceral and intellectual, Keep the Lights On is a moving film that looks at love and all of its manifestations, taking it to dark depths and bringing it back to a place of grace.
Sundance 2012 kicks off on January 19th. Follow our complete coverage from the fest here.
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