Late Bloomers (1997)
Two women have a sudden and unexpected revelation about their sexuality -- and each other -- in this bittersweet comedy-drama. Dinah (Connie Nelson) is a math teacher and girl's basketball coach at Eleanor Roosevelt High School, a public school in a straight-laced Texas community. Dinah is in her early 40s and has settled comfortably, if grudgingly, into single life, while Carly (Dee Hennigan), who works as a secretary at the school, is about the same age and stuck in an unsatisfying relationship with Ron (Gary Carter), who is also on the school's staff as an algebra instructor. Dinah and Carly have known each other casually for some time and never gave each other much thought, until one day, when Carly hears a rumor that Dinah is having an affair with Ron. Carly confronts Dinah after basketball practice, and Dinah assures her that there's no truth to the gossip and then offers to teach her the fine points of the game. The two women sense something is in the air, and when they impulsively kiss, it finally dawns on them that they're attracted to each other. Before long, Carly decides to leave Ron, and she and Dinah go public with their romance. The reaction, however, is anything but charitable; both women become the subject of a wave of gossip and mean-spirited jokes, and after a highly contentious PTA meeting, they loose their jobs (which is bad news for the principle, since Dinah's team was on a winning streak). While Carly's young son is puzzled but accepting of his mother's decision, her teenage daughter Val (Lisa Peterson), still coming to terms with her feelings about boys, is confused and alienated by her mother's new lifestyle, and all the more upset when her boyfriend Jamie (Esteban Powell) breaks up with her in the wake of the flap over Carly's decision. Dinah, meanwhile, has to deal with the unwelcome attentions of male members of the faculty who want to "convert" her back to heterosexuality. Dee Hennigan has also appeared as a member of the stock company on the popular children's television show Wishbone.
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