Aviva is thirteen, awkward and sensitive. Her mother Joyce is warm and loving, as is her father, Steve, a regular guy who does have a fierce temper from time to time. The film revolves around her family, friends and neighbors.
Jennifer Jason Leigh,
Stephen Adly Guirgis
Southern Californian Bree Osbourne, formerly Stanley Chupak, has finally received the news for which she has been waiting: she has been approved for male-to-female sexual reassignment surgery. But before Margaret, her therapist, will allow her to go through with the surgery scheduled in a week's time, Bree has to deal with an unresolved problem from her past. Bree gets a telephone call from a seventeen year old man named Toby Wilkins, who is looking for Stanley, his biological father. Toby is in a New York jail, having been supporting himself by petty crime and hustling. Stanley/Bree knew nothing about Toby before the telephone call. Toby apparently is all alone in the world, with his mother having committed suicide and being estranged from his stepfather in Tennessee. Masquerading as a Christian social worker, Bree, not telling him either of her true identity or her transgender status, bails Toby out of jail and tells him she will take him to Los Angeles, where Toby has aspirations ... Written by
Felicity Huffman had to stay in character all day, while shooting. This included having to keep Bree's voice on so that she wouldn't lose it. If she turned it "off" she would lose the voice. See more »
As Toby is packing his backpack, he pulls out the dog encyclopedia and puts it on top, but a moment later it is gone, then back again. See more »
This was my favorite film of the Tribeca festival. Felicity Huffman's performance is incredible and grabs you from the first scene. It was a smart, poignant and funny film. Some of the characters are too thinly drawn, some of the humor too inappropriately broad but those were minor issues for me. Though rooted in some ways in standard plot devices, the transgender protagonist makes all the difference in the world. Which, in a way, is kind of the point -- how we view people's differences (with acceptance or disdain) says a lot about who we are. Of course, it played well here in New York City. But what about the rest of Bush's America? By the way, I was told that Lions Gate picked up the film for distribution.
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