Billy Porter and Luke Evans return to Tribeca playing partners of thirteen years. Billy stars as Gabriel, an aspiring artist struggling to find creative and personal spark while caring for the young son he shares with his ambitious partner, Nicky (Luke Evans). Stress and anxiety flare as their relationship gets to an unrepairable place, forcing the couple to head for a divorce. Now the two must navigate the unenviable position of revealing the news to shared friends and family. Thus begins the journey to find themselves and support their son.
Luke Evans plays Nicky with a workhorse attitude that comes off as dismissive and arrogant against Billy Porter’s caregiver grace. This dynamic rings authentic for me as the default parent in my marriage. Porter nails every aspect, from his sing-songy tone of voice with Owen to the hesitancy to speak up for his emotional needs. Seeing myself on screen hit hard. While I’ve not had to go through divorce and custody dynamics, I have had these “come to Jesus” moments with my husband. I’ve been lucky.
Both Evans and Porter give us their all in these roles. Watching them navigate the complexities of an evolving relationship is heartbreaking but universally relatable, regardless of your romantic circumstance. Love is complicated and messy. Christopher Woodley as Owen is outstanding. He captures the boundless curiosity and impressionable innocence of a child his age. Writer-director Bill Oliver and co-writer Peter Nickowitz‘s dialogue could be taken directly from my world as a wife, parent, and friend.
OUR SON greatly benefits from two standout supporting performances. Andrew Rannells‘s sarcastic yet caring presence grounds the relationship between Nicky and Gabriel. He is spectacular in every role he tackles. Phylicia Rashad plays Gabriel’s mother, and the pairing is pure magic.
OUR SON is a story of a family trying to figure out what’s best for their child and each other. The characters are fully fleshed-out flawed humans working their way through ever-changing feelings of emotional security. You cannot help but connect with them through the good, the bad, and the ugly.