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When Love Comes

Film (Excerpts) – 1998

... the only one we felt could combine true musical ability on the one hand, plus be extravagantly beautiful, talented and sexy on the other.
– Director Garth Maxwell on casting actor Sophia Hawthorne to play singer/guitarist Sally
[Director Garth] Maxwell displays a talent for dialogue and direction —- and also for apt song lyrics — to make these people engaging and worth caring about. [Rena] Owen and [Simon] Prast, both of whom are well-seasoned actors, possess a wit and depth that lend gravity to a film intent on capturing the skittishness and tentativeness that so often accompany matters of the heart.
– Reviewer Kevin Thomas in The Los Angeles Times, 20 August 1999
Six characters in search of ... oh, you know, the usual — love, fame, meaning. The spin here is the sexual spectrum — gay, lesbian, hetero ... But there’s no mealy-mouthed tokenism here; conversely, no in-your-face strutting, either. It’s rare to see a film with gay characters that doesn’t feel obliged to make an issue of gayness, and that’s refreshing.
– Reviewer Helene Wong in The Listener, 11 September 1999
When Love Comes is a lot like its partly pop, partly grunge score: A little raucous about the edges but soft and sentimental at the core. Go-for-broke performances by Rena Owen and fast-tracked Dean O’Gorman, add up to some blistering exchanges...
– Glenn Lovell, in his second Variety review of When Love Comes, 22 February 1999
[Rena] Owen plays Katie Keen, a transvestite performer who was “famous in the States for a whole week . . . Owen, no doubt determined not to turn Katie into a grotesque, relies on only a hint of extra makeup and almost no discernible masculine affectations. If anything, the transformation is too subtle: One loses sight of the man inside the woman, which robs the character and situation of any urgency.
– Reviewer Glenn Lovell gets confused about the gender of Rena Owen's character, Variety, 1 November 1998