Watch Latter Days
- 1 hr 47 min
Latter Days is a 2003 romantic comedy-drama that explores the relationship between a young, carefree party boy and a devout Mormon missionary. The movie is directed by C. Jay Cox, who also wrote the screenplay. The movie primarily revolves around the story of Christian (played by Steve Sandvoss ), a romantic and promiscuous waiter who lives a carefree and content life in Los Angeles with his friend and roommate Julie (played by Rebekah Johnson). He is often seen engaging in casual sexual affairs with other men without any emotional involvement. His perspective towards life changes, however, when he meets Aaron (played by Wes Ramsey), a Mormon missionary who is new to the city. Being a Mormon, Aaron has taken an oath of celibacy and is devoted to spreading the message of his faith. He is assigned to work as a door-to-door missionary in the neighborhood and is living with his fellow missionaries.
At first sight, Christian is attracted to Aaron's good looks and shy demeanor, and tries to woo him with his charm. However, Aaron is not interested as he can't reconcile his feelings for Christian with his faith. He refuses Christian's advances and even humiliates him in front of his colleague. In a conversation with Aaron, Christian comes to know about his faith's belief that homosexuality is wrong, which makes him angry and skeptical about Aaron's beliefs. Nevertheless, he becomes interested in the challenge of breaking Aaron's celibacy vow.
Christian decides to pursue Aaron and makes a deal with him that if he can prove to him that love exists, Aaron would have to sleep with him. Initially, Aaron refuses, but eventually, seeing how much Christian cares for him, he begins to question his faith and his oath of celibacy. Aaron starts to spend more time with Christian, and their feelings for each other grow deeper. Meanwhile, Christian's friends Julie and Keith (played by Erik Palladino) also play a significant role in shaping Christian and Aaron's relationship.
As their relationship tdefines he faith and individuality of each protagonist, it also brings them under the watchful eyes of the LDS church, as Aaron's higher-ups have been informed of his actions, leading to a congregation holding a 'trial' to determine the level of his faith and whether he still stands as a pure member of the religion.
The plot unfolds in a way that leaves many poignant and emotional scenes that touch upon the struggles that each character faced, as well as their ability to define their own values within the constraints of their community. The movie captures a time where many aspects of identity are tied to wider social constructs and demonstrates that sometimes, it's the most unexpected people who bring out the best in us.
Mary Kay Place plays Lila, a Bible-thumping zealot who considers Christianity to be the only religion on earth. She has to watch her son, Andrew (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt), become isolated and rejected because of his sexual orientation, adding another layer to the story.
Overall, Latter Days is a touching, heartfelt film that explores a delicate topic with sensitivity and insight, showcasing the ability to change one's convictions in the embrace of love, while still remaining faithful to oneself, as well as forces beyond our control. The performances of the actors were resonating and its story is an important message that still resonates today with audiences worldwide. The themes include exploring identity, friendship, romance, religious beliefs, and the consequences that come with societal and community beliefs.
Latter Days is a 2003 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 47 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.0 and a MetaScore of 45.