Starring: Lucas Hedges, Nicole Kidman, Russell Crowe, Joel Edgerton, Cherry Jones, Xavier Dolan, Troye Sivan, Joe Alwyn, Emily Hinkler, Madelyn Cline, Flea
Coming-of-age bio-drama written and directed by Joel Edgerton. This true story follows Jared (Lucas Hedges), the son of a Baptist pastor in a small American town, who is outed to his parents, Marshall and Nancy Conley (Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman) at age 19. Jared is then pressured into attending a gay conversion therapy program, or else be shunned by his family, friends, and church. It is within the program that Jared comes into conflict with its head therapist, Victor Sykes (Joel Edgerton).
Marshall: Jared, I want you to do well. I want you to have a great life. I love you, but we cannot see a way that we can live under this roof if you fundamentally go against the grain of our beliefs. Jared, tell me the truth, that’s all.
Jared: I think about men. I don’t know why, and I’m so sorry.
Dr. Muldoon: Your parents signed you up for a program to fix you. But, Jared, you are a perfectly normal very healthy teenage boy.
Nancy: [to Jared] They’re going to do things for you.
Jared: [to Nancy] You want to say our goodbyes?
Victor Sykes: Welcome to the Refuge Program.
Victor Sykes: You cannot be born a homosexual. This is a lie, it’s a choice.
[to the program attendees]
Brandon: Fake it till you make it. Become the man you are not. Save yourself.
Victor Sykes: Jared, God will not love you the way that you are.
Reverend Neil: Is this what you want? Who’s going to strike this demon out? Hit him!
Jared: I’m having a tough time.
Gary: Let me give you some advice. Tell them whatever they want to hear. Play the part, unless you really think you’ve been changed, or even want to.
Victor Sykes: What you’re going through right now is just a moment.
Jared: A moment.
Victor Sykes: Yeah.
Jared: A moment?!
Nancy: [to Jared] I love God, and I love my son. For your father, it’s a little more complicated.
Marshall: We are not finished!
Jared: I am, because you won’t listen.
Victor Sykes: Your father’s sitting here, telling him how you hate him.
Jared: I’m not going to pretend I hate my father! I don’t hate my father!
Victor Sykes: Then where is all this anger coming from?
Jared: Because you’re making me angry!
Nancy: They say sometimes you got to hurt a child in order to help them, but a mother knows when something isn’t right.
Jared: I don’t want to pretend anymore.
Marshall: I have to ask myself, and God, if I’m ready to lose you.
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