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52 Tuesdays (2013)

Not Rated | | Drama | 1 May 2014 (Australia)
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16-year-old Billie's reluctant path to independence is accelerated when her mother reveals plans to gender transition and their time together becomes limited to Tuesday afternoons.

Director:

Sophie Hyde

Writers:

Matthew Cormack (screenplay), Matthew Cormack (story) | 1 more credit »
10 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tilda Cobham-Hervey ... Billie
Sam Althuizen Sam Althuizen ... Josh
Imogen Archer Imogen Archer ... Jasmine
Del Herbert-Jane Del Herbert-Jane ... James
Beau Travis Williams Beau Travis Williams ... Tom
Mario Späte Mario Späte ... Harry
Greg Marsh Greg Marsh ... Psychiatrist
Audrey Mason-Hyde Audrey Mason-Hyde ... Frida
Danica Moors Danica Moors ... Lisa
Sam Harding Sam Harding ... Peepshow Dancer
Daisy Brown Daisy Brown ... Woman in Tom's Bed
Clare Matthews Clare Matthews ... Shop Assistant
Susan Hyde Susan Hyde ... School Principal Susan Darcy
Susie Skinner Susie Skinner ... Jasmin's Mother
Astrid Pill Astrid Pill ... Josh's Mother
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Storyline

16-year-old Billie's reluctant path to independence is accelerated when her mother reveals plans to gender transition and their time together becomes limited to Tuesday afternoons.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One day a week, every week, for a year See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Australia

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 May 2014 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

52 Yemei shlishi See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Closer Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film won the prestigious Crystal Bear Award (Generation 14plus - Best Film) at the Berlin Film Festival in 2014. The fest's notes for this accolade were: "The situation is exceptional but familiar. This year's winning movie is both surprising and touching. It is a movie about family and the quest for identity, and despite all the conflicts, the protagonists stay connected through their love to each other. The moving story is presented in a fascinating structure and convinces with strong characters, humour, clever ideas and sensitivity." See more »

Quotes

James: A year is a long time especially at your age.
See more »

Connections

Featured in 52 Tuesdays: Gag Reel (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Way Back Home (Stereogamous Remix)
Written/Composed by S. Patten & D. Jensen
Performed by Rodeo
Courtesy of Leonizer Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sophie Hyde and a fresh take on coming of age
11 May 2014 | by lisa_thatcherSee all my reviews

The strength of 52 Tuesdays lies not in its documented revelations of a woman named Jane undergoing a transition over a 12 month period to be recognized as the man James, nor in the carefully examined complications of Billie and her coming of age story, but in the profound respect and dignity afforded the question of gender, the nuanced and detailed research and the delicacy and lightness of touch afforded subject matter that probes each one of us so deeply. The question of "gender assignment" is one that affects us all, because we engage in it habitually, thoughtlessly, on a continual basis. When you glance at any person and even most animals, your first response is without question to assign gender. Your decision about this will then determine how you communicate, how you judge, what you expect.

52 Tuesdays is a much-needed addition to the coming of age story, that turns the tables on the traditional idea of teen transformation, to look at transitioning that occurs between a mother and a daughter through the course of one year. Director Sophie Hyde filmed consecutively, the actors and crew met on Tuesdays to film, Matthew Cormack's script is written over the course of the year, usually each "Tuesday" is completed a couple of Tuesdays ahead of schedule, yet within an overall narrative framework. The film opens with Billie, (a 16 year old Tilda Cobham-Hervey) who is informed by her mother, Jane (Del Herbert-Jane) that she is to go and live with her dad, Beau Travis Williams for a year, because over the next twelve months Jane will be in transition from being identified as Jane to being identified as James. Billie and Jane decide to meet every Tuesday from four in the afternoon (after school) till ten at night to stay connected and to talk about the transitional process – if they feel like it. As Jane is working through her transition, Billie experiences one of her own in the company of two older students, Jasmine, (Imogen Archer) and Josh, (Sam Althuizen) with whom she begins to explore her own sexuality and ideas of how that is manifest in her life. As Jane experiences complications, Billie experiences her mothers transition as a rejection of motherhood, and acts out in her own ways.

Part of what makes 52 Tuesdays so fascinating is the use of film itself. As James transitions, he films himself weekly then shows this to Billie so that they can communicate about the changes occurring. But Billie is changing too, and she too decides to film herself experimenting sexually with her friends, clinging to the films she makes as a solid way of grounding her experience – and connecting with James. However, a sixteen year old filming herself and her friends having sex is not the same as the documented body image transformation James is experiencing. and trouble arises when Billie is confused by her families relationship to appearances. When her tapes are found by all concerned adults, they keep saying "what if this got out?" "What would people think?" and Billie responds with "How is this any different from the films you make?" Billie needs to learn societies judgments can be severe and can ruin people's lives, something she has only seen fought through the courage of her trans parent. Therefore, each Tuesday, we see the film being made, James' transition images and Billie's transition images, until the filming of change becomes its own form of oppression.

Outside of its unusual subject matter, 52 Tuesdays is a beautifully made film, with the difficulties of relating to the people we love coupled with our acceptance of who they are within themselves as they express themselves openly. The actors are nonprofessionals with Tilda Cobham-Hervey putting in a wonderful performance as Billie and Del Herbert-Jane superb as James. Del began working on the film as a gender diversity consultant and eventually was invited to work as an actor on the film. Del identifies as a non gender conforming individual who believes that a binary male / female system is outmoded, and they're commitment to the flawless articulation of this position informs the entire film and makes it a repeat watching experience. Unlike so many films made these days, when you watch 52 Tuesdays, you are immersed in an experience of integrity that gives appropriate informed respect to its subject treatment and uses language in an engaged and open way. 52 Tuesdays is a wonderful film, definitely one as many people as possible should see and one that contributes in a very main stream approachable way the enormously important subject matter it treats.


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