Fer (Emilio Edwards) and Bruno (Francisco Celhay) in In the Grayscale (Wolfe Video)
Male bisexuals are rarely the subject of film, considering the story of a bisexual coming out often seems to be an incomplete one. Female bisexuals fare better, if only because films so often use them as objects of fascination for straight male audiences. People often believe that bisexual men are those who simply have one foot out of the closet, so the story of a man who begins to have a relationship with another man seems complete only when that character fully leaves behind his heterosexual side. In the Grayscale attempts to delve into this duality that bisexual men must face, as its lead character attempts to navigate a relationship with a man while still maintaining the heterosexual life that he does not wish to disavow.
In the Grayscale stars Francisco Celhay as Bruno, a Chilean architect who needs inspiration for his latest project. Although Bruno has a young child and an ex-wife, he becomes fascinated with Fer Contreras (Emilio Edwards), an out-and-proud gay man whom Bruno hires to help him do research. The most surprising thing about In the Grayscale is that the relationship between Bruno and Fer does not proceed as one would expect. It is not Fer who attempts to seduce Bruno; rather, he rebuffs Bruno’s obvious interest in him because he does not want to be used essentially as a test drive for a man exploring his sexuality.
The vast majority of In the Grayscale is comprised of Bruno and Fer together, talking to each other and discovering new facts about one another. The film is reminiscent of other relationship dramas such as Richard Linklater’s Before Sunrise and its sequels, as well as the more recent same-sex equivalent, Andrew Haigh’s Weekend.
Celhay, who looks like a sturdier Jesse Eisenberg, and Edwards make a charming couple, and it is as interesting to see them develop into friends as it is to watch them progress into lovers. The material regarding Bruno’s lack of inspiration regarding his architectural designs plays less well; the two actors have sufficient chemistry that it seems unnecessary to add this type of plot complication.
In the Grayscale is a touching, if small-scale look into the various ways that a person can discover what their true sexuality may actually be. Director Claudio Marcone handles the material with the sensitivity and grace that is required for this coming-out story to not feel incomplete.
In the Grayscale
Now on DVD and VOD
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