On the night of the election, the great comedian George Wallace tweeted, “I promise love will win. Eventually.” While we can only hope (and love), three films this year had wonderful scenes about how that most important of emotions is expressed.
Love in the Time of Carnage in Tower
Bleeding out on hot Texas concrete after being shot during lifelong gun enthusiast Charles Whitman’s 1966 sniping spree, the extremely pregnant Claire Wilson reminisces about falling in love with her boyfriend, Tom, now lying dead beside her. As retold by improbable survivor Wilson and visualized through full, Peter Max-style color in Keith Maitland’s otherwise monochromatically rotoscoped documentary, it captures the feeling of young love like few other films.
The Stream of Time in Louder Than Bombs
Sullen teenager Conrad (Devin Druid) walks his crush Melanie (Ruby Jerins) back to her home after she gets drunk at a party. He looks away as she pauses to pee in a driveway, and her stream touches his shoe, echoed by a single tear running down his cheek. Narrated by Melanie describing Conrad’s memory of the event, it’s as intimate as they’ll ever be, and even though she suggests they have lunch soon, he knows she’ll feel differently when she sobers up. Most things only happen once, if they ever happen at all.
Leila, the Sixth SeventhCousin of Jimmy Vestvood, Amerikan Hero
This very funny leading role for Maz Jobrani is frequently stolen by Sheila Vand as the title character’s adoring distant cousin Leila. Perhaps best-known for her smoldering, dark-eyed performance as the chador-wearing vampire in A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, all of Vand’s scenes are a joy — but none is quite like the grin and eyebrow wag that Leila gives Jimmy as she corrects him for calling her his sixth cousin: “Seventh.” It’s subtle, hilarious, and hella sexy.