Tangerine

July 21, 2015 at 10:15 am | Posted in 2015 | 2 Comments
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◊ ◊ ◊ ½

This raw, nervy film careens along at a pacing in keeping with the almost-out-of-control lives of its subjects. It’s Christmas Eve in L.A. and transgendered woman, Sin-Dee Rella, has just gotten out of a  stay in jail. She is sharing a celebratory doughnut with her best friend, Alexandra, when she let’s slip that Sin-Dee’s boyfriend Chester has been cheating on her. Sin-Dee takes off like a shot and the film begins. Over the course of one long day, we watch her attempt to track down the girl Chester is cheating with and then Chester himself. Along the way, we get what feels like the most realistic look into the daily lives of modern urban “working girls” that I can remember. This is a comedy, first and foremost, and it is almost endlessly funny. But, it’s worth noting that the humor comes from the sharpened defense mechanisms of these girls; they are all tough hides and sharp claws. We can laugh at their wit and candor and vicious cattiness but it’s hard not to notice what’s underneath. I think that is what fascinated me most about this film. It is ostensibly a comedy but, because it seems to real, it get’s under your skin. Writer and director, Sean Baker (“Greg the Bunny,” of all things), has such affection for these two girls, it’s hard not to see them as wholly real people underneath all that bravado. The two trans women leads are first time actors but, what they lack in experience, they make up for in the vulnerability and rawness they bring to the screen. This was a film that made me laugh but also unnerved me a bit. And that’s a good thing.

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  1. […] onto the big screen with his first full-length feature film, “Tangerine” (see my review here). In case we were wont to think this was a one-time fluke, Baker ups his game and comes with an […]

  2. gotta check this out!


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