Yoav is one angry man – so angry that he sacrifices relationships with his partner and his best friend for a life of solitude – in the new heart searing film 15 Years.
An Israeli production and filmed in Tel Aviv, 15 Years focuses on sexy daddy Yoav (Oded Leopold) who appears to have everything a gay man would want: an extremely sexy partner of 15 years Dan (a very sexy and well-cast Udi Persi who brings comfort to the screen every time he is on), a good job as an architect, absolutely gorgeous best female friend Alma (Ruti Asarsai), and an amazing apartment overlooking Tel Aviv. What he didn’t have was a great relationship with his parents; his mother is long gone while his father lies comatose in a local nursing facility. Then one night, while he and Dan are hosting a dinner party with all their friends, Yoav loses it. Why? Because their gay friends now have children while Alma had previously announced that she is pregnant.
Yoav starts complaining that they are all turning into straight people – with families – something he’s just not into. But when Dan starts to reassess their relationship and feels he could possibly see a baby in their future Yoav doesn’t accept this and leaves and moves into a dilapidated apartment, and his life starts falling apart. His company loses a very lucrative contract, his father passes away thereby leaving wounds still open, his friends shun him, he doesn’t want to be at Alma’s side when she has her baby, and a one-night stand he has turns into a mess. Meanwhile, Dan has moved on and has met a much younger guy who’s he’s really smitten with. So is Yoav and Dan’s 15-year relationship really over? Will Yoav come to his senses and realize what he’s lost?
What’s really frustrating with this film is Yoav’s anger. Sure he can be mad at the world but enough so to lose everything he’s worked for? Anyone would kill to have people like Alma and Dan in their lives – what is Yaov’s anger and demons really all about? We are never convinced. But having said that writer and director Yuval Hadadi has made a very good film with perhaps the sexiest gay couple you’ll see in a film this year, a film that really left me thinking about past relationships and what-ifs.
15 Years is now available from all good digital platforms. Visit the website for more details.
Tim Baros writes film and theatre articles/ reviews for Pride Life and The American magazines and websites, as well as for Hereisthecity.com, Blu-RayDefinition.com and TheGayUK.com. He has also written for In Touch and TNT Magazines, SquareMile.com and LatinoLife.co.uk. He is a voting member for the UK Regional Critics Circle and the Gay & Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association (GALECA – of which he is the UK representative). In addition, he has produced and directed two films: The Shirt and Rex Melville Desire: The Musical.