‘Lovers in a Dangerous Time’ – What Makes a Love Story Canadian?

Love stories are supposedly universal. We can all relate to the feeling of loving another person, being loved and then the heart breaks. We can all also relate to the nostalgia of childhood and wishing as adults that we can go back to that carefree era of our lives.

Lovers in a Dangerous Time is an independent film written and produced by Mark Hug and May Charters that touched on these emotions through the lives of two childhood friends, Todd Timmins (Mark Hug) and Allie Adamson (May Charter). Yes, there is hockey and apple orchards in small Canadian towns. Yes, this is a Canadian love story but it’s a story we can all relate to.

Allie returned to her hometown in Creston for her high school reunion after her career came to a temporary halt. She is reunited with Todd, the boy next door she grew up with and who was essentially her best friend when she was a teenager. They reconnected and began an attempt to relive their carefree years… but they couldn’t escape the realities and pressure of adulthood forever.

The film moved slowly, in almost fuzzy state as we watched Allie and Todd try to find an escape from their current problems and responsibilities. Their relationship was very sweet at the beginning – mixed with the playfulness from their childhood and the lust of adulthood, which they both tried to suppress. Despite their closeness, I could also feel the awkwardness and tension as they figure out their feelings for each other, their expectations and the possibilities (or impossibilities) of their futures.

Independent movies usually have a very different sensibility compared to mainstream Hollywood films. Lovers in a Dangerous Time will force the viewer to slow down and connect with the characters on a more realistic level. In other words, don’t expect a Katherine Heigl movie. This is not an easy movie to watch if you are expecting just simple entertainment. The movie requires some digging and a bigger understanding of human relationships and the trials of adulthood.

I really like how the movie has a calming effect despite having high tension scenes, like when Todd and his brother were fighting and branding each other on their rear ends! There is no over exaggerated emotions, just purely realistic reactions and emotions – sadness and anger. There was no need for a villain in order to feel sympathy for the protagonists. In a way, Todd was his own enemy throughout the film as he struggled with his own buried frustrations and disappointment in himself.

The ending was open ended and without a definite conclusion to the characters’ fates, but at the same time I felt like there was a  somewhat sweet resolution between the Todd and Allie.

I wouldn’t recommend this to people who have short attention spans but for those who want a refreshing take on love stories (and maybe you like a little Canadian sensibilities too!), this could be a nice Friday night movie to watch.

I am not sure if this film will be available in the United States but the movie will be released on April 6th, 2012 at AMC Theaters in Toronto, Canada. For more information, please visit www.inadangeroustime.com.

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