She's a Boy I Knew

Saturday 23 May, 22:00, De Balie, grote zaal

Gwen Haworth, documentary, Canada, 2007, 70 min, in English, not subtitled

Transition documentation often tells a predicable story, which this film shares: since his early childhood Steven knew he wanted to be a girl yet, only after marriage does he decide to go through with a sex change to become Gwen. Displacing the formula, what She’s a Boy I Knew contributes to the genre is gut wrenching honest reactions and deeply introspective commentary from those people closest to the filmmaker. Expressions of refreshing candor come from a father who suffers the loss of his only son, a sister who’s own medical history is brought back to light, influences on a younger queer sibling, parallels in her mother’s (lost) ambition, and finally the heartbreak of a wife’s lost love. Beyond the engrossing interview material, Haworth uses archival family footage, phone messages, and animation, to create the emotional arc that is at turns funny, painful, and awkward. Filmed over several years while consciously making use of consumer grade material, Haworth’s unique image of a family transitioning demonstrates that chronicling trans experiences is within everyone’s reach.

Gwen Haworth will be present at the screening and will give a workshop during the festival on D.I.Y. filmmaking.