Writer/director Terracino makes his feature film debut with “Elliot Loves,” a crowd-pleaser in 2012 on the LGBT film festival circuit.
Terracino weaves the story of Elliot as a 9-year-old raised by a single mom who is attracted to the bad boys, and Elliot as a 21-year-old searching for love and finding the choices he makes are just as bad as his mother’s.
Fabio Costaprado, a relative unknown with luscious black curly hair who beat out 40 other actors for the lead role, creates a very likable Elliot who is conflicted by his past as well as his present. His is a complex character of a kid of Dominican heritage who grows up haunted by the absence of his father and physically abused by the boyfriend his mother brings home. He, nonetheless, is an optimist when he meets guys who he easily falls in love with, only to find them not reciprocating the same feelings.
Elena Goode (“Gossip Girl,” “The Dictator,” “As The World Turns”) is excellent as Elliot’s free-spirited mother who is an outcast in her family for her dalliances.
Terracino gets fine supporting performances at every turn, including from “boyfriends” Jermaine Montell as Kiko, Monte Bezell as Joe and Guillermo Iván as Fabian.
Although considered a comedy, “Elliot Loves” is sometimes painful to watch as Costaprado exposes the vulnerability of his character. But stick with the plot and be rewarded.
“Elliot Loves” (2012) runs for 92 minutes. The DVD includes commentary with writer/director Terracino and director of photography Saro Varjabedian, as well as extended scenes.
The film won Best Feature at the Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Fest and the Indianapolis LGBT Film Fest, and was picked as the opening night film at QFest in Philadelphia.
To order the DVD from TLAGay.com, click HERE.
Ken Williams is Editor in Chief of SDGLN. He can be reached at [email protected], @KenSanDiego on Twitter, or by calling toll-free to 888-442-9639, ext. 713.