Impressively, Chris & Don opens up the romance between the English novelist Christopher Isherwood and the painter Don Bachardy without sensationalizing the particulars. Bachardy was 18 when he met Isherwood, almost 50, on a beach in Santa Monica in 1952. Bachardy was a fan of movie stars, a product of Los Angeles, thoroughly uninterested in books; Isherwood was the writer about whom Somerset Maugham said to Virginia Woolf, "That young man holds the future of the English novel in his hands." (See movie times, www.thestranger .com, for details.)