The overlap of faith, sex, love, coming of age, public worries, and private concerns form the interesting mix of “Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party.” Slated to premiere today at the Maryland Film Festival and screen at the upcoming BAMcinemaFest, Stephen Cone‘s film plays out in the vein of David Robert Mitchell‘s “Myth Of The American Sleepover,” and today we have the exclusive trailer for the drama.
Starring Pat Healy (“Cheap Thrills,” “The Innkeepers“) and Cole Doman in his first feature film, the setting sprawls across the titular event, in which the lives of both teenagers and adults intersect. Here’s the official synopsis: The film tells the tale of two teenage boys, preacher’s kid Henry Gamble and his friend Gabe, who has a sleepover the night before Henry’s seventeenth birthday pool party. Typical teenage boy chat quickly turns sexual, and it’s silently implied that Henry, on a search for identity, has a crush on Gabe. As dawn arrives on the day of the party, Henry’s mom Kat wakes in a state of limbo, middle-aged, with a secret. A little while later, Pastor Bob is making breakfast, and they are joined by Henry’s 19-year-old sister Autumn, home from college for the party. Later that afternoon, as guests arrive – both from the church, as well as Henry’s own “secular” friends – and day turns to night, Henry carefully navigate the religious strictures and sexual secrets of his community, as do the adults and teenagers of the party, all struggling to tread the public and private, and their longing, despite themselves and their faith, for earthly love.
Cone has already made himself one to watch thanks to the success of his award-winning film “The Wise Kids,” so “Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party” is one to keep on your radar. Watch below.