From writer/director Keith Behrman, the new film “Giant Little Ones” tackles a friendship torn apart by a hookup that changes their lives forever.
Starring Kyle MacLachlan (Twin Peaks), Josh Wiggins (Hellion), and Darren Mann (Sabrina the Teenage Witch) the story grapples with teenage sexuality through the lens of two high school golden boys.
Over lunch this week at New York’s Empire Steakhouse, The Knockturnal had the chance to sit down with the director and some of the cast to discuss the film’s relevant themes and potential impact.
“I wanted to address my lifelong frustration with models of masculinity and all the binary expressions of sexuality and all the limiting beliefs and thoughts that I grew up with,” said Behrman.
“I think what’s happening is the film is finding a life and voice outside of us now and it’s having a really amazing impact on a lot of people from around the world. We traveled to a lot of festivals and we had kids tell us that it changed their life, one kid told me it saved their life,” Behrman continued.
Josh Wiggins, the film’s lead, finds the film’s angle to be unique. “This societal expectation to label yourself as anything, regardless if its sexuality or gender, or any type of label that people want to put on themselves. Putting pressure on yourself to find a certain label, it’s kind of you are who you are, there’s no real reason to put yourself in this box.”
He continued, “That’s really what set this apart from other movies that may cover the same subject matter. This is a message that I personally hadn’t seen in a movie with these kind of themes.”
Kyle MacLachlan plays the protagonist’s father who has recently come out of the closet himself. He reflected that throughout his career he’s seen a shift in how stories about the LGBT community are told. “You can look back on moments, I’m thinking now of Sean Penn doing Harvey Milk. Not that that was the turning point by any means, but there have been steps going forward to the point now where there isn’t an issue … We should all be represented, depending on sexual orientation, ethnicity, everything. You should be able to see that, you should be able to relate to that story as an audience member.”
MacLachlan also hopes viewers walk away from the film with compassion. “I think for people who may be going through this experience, or are uncertain about who they are, that they’re like, ‘Oh it’s ok.’ And for people who don’t understand on the other side and maybe are frightened or they react negatively that it teaches them as well that there’s another response that you can have. So compassion and understanding.”
Giant Little Ones is in theaters now.