A movie that proves it is never too late to date, The Age of Love, will be shown at The J Patio Gallery on Thursday, March 30 at 1 p.m. The showing is free for everyone as part of the Kindred Active Adult Series. Dessert and drinks will follow the movie.
Born in the years before WWII, none of the 30 registrants for Rochester, NY’s first senior speed dating event dreamt of being flung into the high-tech social scene of the new millennium. But now, as posters go up, local media buzzes and anxious anticipation grows, these typically overlooked elders lay their hearts on the line, fearlessly confronting realities of physical appearance, romance and loneliness, loss and new beginnings.
An 82-year-old bodybuilding champ, bitterly divorced in his fifties, imagines someone new by his side; a skydiving widow dulls her loss by pursuing younger men; an online-dating addict searches the web for Mr. Right; a romantic discards his portable oxygen for a sunset tango on the beach; a 1940s movie fanatic who escaped an abusive marriage still seeks her ‘Fred and Ginger’ romance. Faced with feelings “even our own kids never ask about,” each dater’s intimate confessions blend with revealing vérité to shed light on the unexpectedly intense and complex feelings that lurk behind wrinkled skin and thinning hair.
The event arrives, and seniors, coiffed and polished, show up armed with ice-breakers and nervous attempts at humor. As the 5-minute ‘dates’ begin, they seek common ground in medical ailments, senior discounts and Big Band memories. Yet, beneath the hearty banter simmer ageless hopes and fears: Will they be harshly judged over looks and deficiencies? Will inner desires match real-world possibilities? And can they reach past old loves and losses and open up to a stranger once again?
It’s only days later, as results envelopes are torn open by anxious hands, that the moment of truth arrives. And it’s suddenly clear how little changes in the realm of love—not awkward teenage anxieties, not the delight at being desired, and not the clumsy tears at rejection.
Several first dates that lead to unexpected comedy and distress. One man can’t stop talking about his hospitalizations, a woman claims to be matched with the wrong date, and one couple, crammed in a cluttered kitchen, struggle to summon any small talk at all. But then, there is the first glimmer of a pairing that might evolve into a new and mature love.
Playful and wise, passionate and inspiring, these senior daters entertain and enlighten with a candor that puts media stereotypes to shame. Something’s clearly at stake in each life, whether the find the love or not, they are determined to grow and learn and try.
Register for free tickets in advance at www.jewishlouisville.org/ageoflove.