The world might grow and advance at the highest speed, but there are some questions that nobody can truly answer. How does one get over their first true love? What impact can one person have over another person’s entire life trajectory? How does one person become so important in mere hours that it physically hurts to say goodbye? While many people cannot even begin to comprehend how powerful true love can be, the 2022 romantic drama movie “Of An Age” tries its best to portray it. Written and directed by Goran Stolevski, the Australian movie revolves around Nikola, better known as Kol, who is a ballroom dancer and closeted gay guy. Nikola’s family doesn’t get him, and his friends don’t seem to give a damn about him. With nowhere to go, Kol breezes through life, looking for a sunnier horizon. When he encounters a friend’s older brother, his life takes a turn for the better. What follows is one hell of a romance that leaves both of them devastated.
The profoundly moving movie makes you think about the wonders of true love. Moreover, it will make you reminisce about the time you first fell in love and how deeply you felt your heart breaking. It moves slowly to let the viewer soak in every moment that builds up to the ultimate romance between two men who feel unseen and unheard in life. Every scene takes its time to crawl into the viewers’ hearts and establish the characters and their quirks.
Plot Synopsis: What Happens In ‘Of An Age’?
The movie begins with a disgruntled Kol calling his friend Ebony in distress. He drinks and appears sad, though we have no clue why. We are taken back in time to 1999. Young Kol practices his ballroom dance moves when he feels his whole family’s bearing down on him. Moreover, he gets a call from his friend, Ebony, who is stranded on a beach. Ebony is calling for help because she doesn’t have any idea about her location is or how she ended up there. This first glimpse is enough for us to gauge both their characters and their personalities. Ebony is a spoilt and selfish young girl, whereas Kol is kind and selfless.
The two get into a screaming match at first, where Ebony is not even trying to accept her faults and be humble enough to ask for help with decency. Kol gambles on his chance to participate in the dancing finals and goes out on a limb to get Ebony back home. He scrambles to find someone with a car and without a life to go two hours away to get Ebony. As a last resort, Kol calls Adam, Ebony’s brother, for help. Adam and Kol embark on a long drive to find Ebony and pick her up.
As they chat along the way, they wonder why they haven’t interacted much with each other. Both of them have been in Ebony’s life for the longest time. They soon find things to connect on, like books, music, and their mutual interest in boys. However, Kol does not yet realize that he is gay. In retrospect, we believe Kol was hesitant to accept his sexuality because of his cultural identity and his conservative family. When he sees Adam as an openly proud gay man, Kol contemplates the lie he has been living. Adam’s charm and magnanimity make Kol even more attracted to him. They discuss their love for books and authors. It feels as if the two men fit together like puzzle pieces.
When they reach home, we can almost see the pain in their eyes that they have to say goodbye. Kol masturbates with Adam in his mind as he wears his t-shirt and gets a few mixtapes from him. This is the first time we truly see Kol’s heart changing and his resolve to accept who he is. Their next encounter occurs at a house party. When everyone else is laughing, drinking, and having fun, Adam calls Kol into another room to just sit and chill as they get high. After the party, Adam and Kol go for a long drive where they confront their deepest feelings as Kol expresses how frustrated he is with his situation at home. His mother works twice as hard to compensate for his father’s death and to keep the family going. They have to live with their uncle to make ends meet.
Adam consoles an exasperated Kol, only to end up being kissed by him. They share an intimate moment with each other as they make out at the back of Adam’s car. After driving back home, the sheer devastation in both of them feels so real, as if it’ll creep out of the screen and engulf you in pain. They cry and complain about how unfair life can be. They finally found each other, and life started becoming bearable. However, Adam is leaving for his Ph.D. in another state by the next day, after which they will probably never see each other again. Adam and Kol hold on to each other for however long they can to keep a part of the other with themselves and never forget the feeling of being truly loved and held. One would think this is where the story ends since they say goodbye and suffer through such torment, but there’s more.
‘Of An Age’ Ending Explained: Do Adam And Kol End Up Together?
The hopeless romantic in us will always want a love story to have a happy ending with the protagonists driving off into the sunset. But what would be real and heartbreaking about that? After their final goodbye in 1999, Kol and Adam cross paths once again when they visited their hometown after eleven years to attend Ebony’s wedding in 2010. Their eyes meet each other at the airport, and they catch up with each other on the ride back home. They talk about their lives and careers away from home. The happiness in their demeanor after seeing each other is unmatched. Even though they speak like long-lost friends, the energy that they share reflects something much more.
The tipping point in their reunion occurs when Kol learns that Adam is now married. He must have had a sliver of hope of being with his first love after meeting him after so long, but this revelation shatters his heart into a million pieces. He goes through the wedding with a heavy heart. Now that he has come out of the closet and made peace with his family, albeit at the cost of his family, Kol expresses how he has been with a lot of men in this span of over a decade. Yet nobody came close to making him feel what Adam did. Nobody could console him or make him feel better as much as Adam did. And now that Adam is someone else’s husband, Kol feels lost and rejected again. The feeling he shared with Adam of belonging to someone and being loved by someone is gone. Over the years, he held on to that feeling and went on with life, knowing that someone out there loved him. All of that feels empty and nonexistent after hearing the news.
Unfortunately, no matter how much Adam and Kol shared in that brief romance back in the day, they don’t end up together. As they say, life fleets away pretty fast when you are busy making other plans. It did not matter how strongly they felt for each other or how powerful their love was. Once Adam got married to someone else, what they had was gone. It’s ultimately understandable on Adam’s part, as he never knew if they could meet again. He is a realist and pragmatically thinks of possibilities. Adam did not want to hold out hope for some miracle that could get their paths to cross again. Hence, he got married when he fell in love again. Maybe he learned from his past mistakes (with Kol) and did not let love pass him by. He held on to love when another opportunity presented itself.
The last scene of the movie witnesses Adam expressing his desire not to have sex with Kol but rather to just hold him. The two men lie down in bed with grief in their hearts and each other in their arms. After their goodbye in the car, this scene comes in a close second on the list of the saddening scenes of the movie. The slow burn of their romance creeps in gradually but remains in the viewers’ minds for a long time. One is forced to think about the impact of love and the remnants of a lost romance that refuse to leave your thoughts.
The ethereal feeling of finding a home in a person is exquisitely showcased in this movie. The creator was able to encapsulate young love and its dire consequences extremely eloquently. The romance between Adam and Kol transforms them both. It also transcends them into worlds of their own, where Kol is finally able to accept himself as he is, and Adam is able to remove the facade of his quirk and humor to truly be himself.