Sunday, August 2, 2009

Writing Assignment #1

I promised the respondents to my "contest" posts that I'd write something on whatever topics they chose. I've had the first topic for about a week, and I must confess that I'm somewhat stumped.

Caroline wrote to me:

Lets be predictable and combine two subjects which interest us:-

"The Movies which got Transgender right"


I must confess: I haven't seen a lot of movies that get us. There haven't been a lot of mainstream movies that talk frankly about us, and too often TG characters are victims of hate crimes or serve at the butt of jokes.

I've heard a lot about Transamerica, starring Felicity Huffman, but I heard lots of negative reviews from assorted trans friends, so I refuse to watch it. I might have to break down and give it a look, just in case I'm wrong.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0407265/

There's Boys Don't Cry,

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0171804/

(I am currently experiencing difficulties with my Italics button)



the story of Brandon Teena. I'm MTF, not the other way around, but I found it to be very real. Gut-wrenchingly so.

I've only seen a few other movies that depict trans characters in a believable fashion. The oldest one would be The World According to Garp, which isn't about a trans person, but one figures big in the story. Roberta Muldoon, played by John Lithgow, was the first transwoman I remember seeing in a film. I enjoyed the novel more than the film, but I saw the movie when I was ten, but read the book when I was twenty.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0084917/

Another grim one I've seen is Princesa

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0281094/

The title character is Fernanda, a trans teenager who travels from Brazil to Italy to work as a prostitute in order to finance her SRS. She has some rough experiences, but she finds a sugar daddy. I don't want to give away the ending, but it's not a happy story.


One light-hearted movie I've seen is Different for Girls

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0116102/

Back in the 70s, the two characters were best friends in school. Flash forward to the 90s, and one of them has transitioned and is trying to build a new life for herself. She finds herself falling for her old friend, but things don't always work out the way we hope they do.

That's all I've got for now. I apologize if it seems half-arsed, but I confess to feeling underprepared for this one. If anyone could suggest some decent trans-themed films to watch, I'll be happy to Netflix 'em and post my thoughts.


C
oming soon: Assignment #2, from Chrissie, "Dreams of Flight".