Transamerica is an independent comedy drama movie directed by Duncan Tucker and runs for 103 minutes. The picture is about family and addresses delicate topics without digressing into campiness. The thematic concern of this movie revolves around a personal journey towards self-discovery. The picture was released in North America on December 2005. The paper will lay emphasis on a brief summary of the plot and relate the family in the movie with my family. It will also incorporate my opinion on realism in the movie and its striking elements as well as its influence on understanding diversity. Reasons for choosing the movie will also be included.
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The main characters in the movie are Sabrina "Bree" Osbourne and Toby Wilkins. The picture starts with a glimpse of Sabrina "Bree" Osbourne’s mandatory psychological evaluation before she undergoes her final operation to become a woman. Bree is a transsexual woman who makes her living as a professional telemarketer and waitress in a Mexican restaurant. She saves every penny so that she can afford her gender reassignment surgery. However, a week before her surgery, Sabrina "Bree" Osbourne receives a phone call from Toby Wilkins who was jailed in New York. Eventually, she discovers that Toby is her son and looks forward to breaking with her past and renouncing him. Sabrina "Bree" Osbourne born as Stanley Schupak, a genetic male, is about to undergo a transition to become the woman that Stanley has always desired to be.
She remembers that when she was a male, she had a fling in campus and Toby is more likely to be the result of that fling. Toby has no idea that the person he thinks is his dad is not biologically a woman. Subsequently, Bree decides to confide in her therapist even though she refuses to sign Bree’s surgery and advices her to confront her predicament. While helping her son she impersonates a church social worker and offers him a ride to Los Angeles. Kevin aspires to become an actor in the adult movie industry while Bree does not disclose that she is the father. The two embark on a cross-country road trip where they can get to know each other.
The family in the movie is unlike my family because my father would not undergo a sex change in the quest of becoming the person he has always desired to be. Similarly, sex changes are inappropriate because God created people as either male or female and one should not undergo an operation to change their gender. Transsexuals lack recognition of their rights and are at times compelled to lead an animal survival life. My family members would not be willing to experience all that. When Tobby and Bree arrive in a town called Callicoon, Kentucky, Bree discovers that Tobby’s stepfather is abusive and molested him. Similarly, my family would not embrace such behavior because molesting causes trauma. It is also a shameful act that may mentally affect victims if they do not know their next course of action.
The realism portrayed in the movie is accurate and brings out the roles played by the characters. For instance, Bree hides her real identity from Tobby as she wants to keep it a secret. However, when they are on the road, it reaches a point when Bree has to urinate and Toby accidentally sees that Bree is transsexual. Realism is depicted by his ability to accept Bree as a transgender even though he is unhappy that she has not made it clear from the onset. Similarly, the movie embraces realism as it has a quiet ending and gives a glimpse of hope and acknowledgement of the challenges that lie ahead.
The striking and astonishing thing about this picture is that Duncan Tucker does not perceive Bree as a tragic figure despite the fact that being transsexual and undergoing gender reassignment is a painful thing. In addition, the soundtrack of this movie includes cuts written by members of the Old Crow Medicine Show and its public acceptance is positive. However, there are people who criticize the movie for its attempts to institutionalize the experience of a transgender woman. The public also feels that the picture ought to use a transgender actor to depict a transgender role.
The movie has influenced my understanding of diversity because it encourages people to find their real identity and shows the impact that family has on people’s lives. The picture is also true to itself in the sense that it celebrates diversity and odd behavior without being judgemental. The movie has also influenced the understanding of diversity in the sense that people can do what they want with their lives even though it will affect how they will be perceived by others.
I chose this movie because it covers a touchy and emotionally risky territory downplayed by most audiences. Moreover, the movie also advocates for honest dealings with the predicaments at hand and does not encourage the sugar coating of painful events. Even though the picture offers hope, it also highlights clumsiness which is prevalent in daily life. The characters are sympathetic and the movie proves to be a fine central performance. For example, the performance by Felicity Huffman (Bree) is a remarkable feat in respect to composure as well as physical dedication. The movie also shows what Bree has to experience to find her identity which is something people take for granted. In the process, she takes hormones, receives therapy, and wears certain garments. This is a lesson that lays emphasis on the conceit of self-realization and the impact of life choices on one’s relationship with others.
Transamerica focuses on the journey of a transsexual who discovers that she has a son by the one girl she had sex with before starting her transition. The movie has interesting characters and embraces the frame narrative of a road trip. Moreover, it tells a tale of eccentric friendship and avoids pretentious moral lessons.
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