NEW YORK, Aug. 28 (UPI) -- Director Ira Sachs says Love is Strange is a classic love story.
The 48-year-old director detailed the new film ahead of its premiere in an interview with the Washington Post.
Love is Strange follows longtime gay couple Ben (John Lithgow) and George (Alfred Molina), who marry after 40 years together. The Catholic school where George works finds out about the wedding, and the character loses his job. The couple find themselves unable to afford their apartment, and they decide to stay separately with family and friends, rather than continue to make waves in their community.
"I hesitate to say that, but it's such a clear example of a classic love story where the object is external, and how the couple overcomes this obstacle together," Sachs said. "They're not fighters. They're not taking it to the streets. In this situation, they accept what is."
"I think there's a humility to that that I find very specific to that generation," he elaborated. "There are men I know who have lived kind of a gentle, unexceptional -- except in their own sphere -- lives. And yet the are disappearing as a generation. It's a film that tries to ask, 'What do we owe the generation that brought us up?'"
Sachs, who is openly gay himself, said he has "never been so optimistic about gay rights in this country."
"The film, its lightness, its humor, its lack of strum und drang is timely," he opined. "This movie couldn't have been made, at least by me, five years ago."
Love is Strange opens in limited release on Friday.