North Star (Short film)

LGBTQ Film and TV

NORTH STAR | Trailer from P.J. Palmer on Vimeo.

Read more about North Star by visiting the official website.


Sometimes a film comes along that is so beautiful, so perfect, and so intuitive and intricate that thirty minutes are all it needs to sweep you away. North Star, directed by P.J. Palmer, is one of those films. Palmer’s film is heartbreaking, loving and tender, with its conversations on mortality, diversity, faith, and love full of texture and nuance. It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful short films I have seen in recent years.

For centuries we have looked to the stars for answers, their cosmic light burning bright in the sky for all to see. Looking up at the night sky in all its beauty reminds us that our lives are part of one big cosmic puzzle. Some call this heaven, and others call it a galaxy of infinite possibilities; whatever the terminology, the stars remind us that our life is brief and our purpose varied in creating new and vibrant constellations here on Earth.


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During our time on Earth, we burn bright with energy, love and laughter, building our lives around those we love and those who love us in return. If we are lucky, we meet people who we know will always be there for us, no matter what, and we pledge to protect them and love them even when their light begins to fade. James (Colman Domingo) and his husband Craig (Malcolm Gets) made that commitment long ago. As Craig’s light dims due to severe illness, James cares for him, dressing him, bathing him and feeding him. While Craig is weak and unable to speak, their bond of love remains as bright as the North Star.


North Star
Colman Domingo and Malcolm Gets ‘North Star’ Directed by P.J. Palmer

However, to care for Craig, James must make financial decisions on their isolated ranch near the Canadian border. Here he relies on Craig’s sister Erin (Audrey Wasilewski) for the drugs that keep his husband comfortable. Erin profoundly loves and cares for her brother and James, but her faith has never allowed her to accept their marriage or relationship. She wants Craig to be near her so she can look after him and help him find Jesus before he passes. But James is defiant and intends to keep Craig home on the ranch, even as the bank threatens foreclosure on their once thriving farm.

In life, the star that guides you will be different to the star that guides me, even though they may look the same. In its intricate discussions on the interface between sexual orientation, faith and race, Erin cannot accept the star James and Craig chose to follow. Meanwhile, James will protect their agreed course at all costs even though he knows he cannot cope alone for much longer.


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Palmer never allows for simple answers or sharply drawn ethical lines in his exquisite thirty-minute film. Instead, he allows conversations on love in its many forms to shine through. For example, while we may disagree with Erin’s beliefs and tactics, her love is undeniable if confused by her faith. Meanwhile, for James, his commitment to cherish, protect and care for Craig is something he will die fighting for. His love for Craig was hard won in a society where they fought for acceptance, and nothing will tear them apart as Craig’s star dims. The result is a passionate, beautiful and delicate discussion on love, loss and family.

With beautiful central performances from Colman Domingo, Malcolm Gets, and Audrey Wasilewski, stunning direction from Palmer and exquisite cinematography from Ernesto Lomeli, North Star is genuinely outstanding.


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  • STAR RATING
5

Summary

With beautiful central performances from Colman Domingo, Malcolm Gets, and Audrey Wasilewski, stunning direction from Palmer and exquisite cinematography from Ernesto Lomeli, North Star is genuinely outstanding.

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