The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - TV Guide - - Front Page -

WITH the Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment show­ing po­lit­i­cal lead­er­ship by propos­ing leg­is­la­tion to ban con­ver­sion ther­apy – a dan­ger­ous prac­tice by largely re­li­gious groups to “pray the gay away” – this movie is a top­i­cal must-watch. Di­rected and writ­ten by Aus­tralian ac­tor Joel Edger­ton (above), it has cat­a­pulted the Aussie star into the Hol­ly­wood strato­sphere. Adapted from the best-sell­ing mem­oir by Gar­rard Con­ley, who ex­posed the heart­break­ing ex­pe­ri­ence of gay teens. Edger­ton plays the God-fear­ing and bom­bas­tic ther­a­pist who leads Love In Ac­tion, a gay con­ver­sion ther­apy camp, where fam­i­lies send their sons and daugh­ters to learn how to be straight. The su­perb Lu­cas Hedges plays a col­lege stu­dent based on Con­ley, who is outed out­ra­geously to his con­ser­va­tive par­ents – played by Rus­sell Crowe and Nicole Kid­man, both at their best in this re­mark­able and pow­er­ful film. Hedges is Jared Ea­mons, a pretty straight up kid – he doesn’t drink, smoke or do drugs and dates a beau­ti­ful girl, at­tends church and is a star ath­lete. But he has feel­ings for men, a dark se­cret he keeps from his Bap­tist preacher dad Mar­shall (Crowe) and hair­dresser mum, Nancy. While the Os­car-win­ning stars in this won a large amount of the plau­dits, Hedges is de­serv­ing of praise for his cap­ti­vat­ing per­for­mance – back­ing it up with the new re­lease film, Ben Is Back, co-star­ring Ju­lia Roberts, in cin­e­mas now. A star to watch.

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