A couple of years ago he news was all about trans-fats.
Thanks to Caitlyn Jenner and Chelsea Manning, this year it’s all trans-gender.
At the Toronto Film Festival we had two features back to back on the subject on Saturday. First, “About Ray,” starring Elle Fanning as a teen girl who wants her mom (Naomi Watts) to sign the papers allowing gender reassignment. Her lesbian grandma (Susan Sarandon) is on the fence. Her deadbeat dad (Tate Donovan) is against it.
Then there’s “The Danish Girl,” with Eddie Redmayne as a Danish painter married to Alicia Vikander for six years before he decides that he’s a woman named Lily and must have sex change surgery.
No one remembers “Transamerica,” the excellent 2006 film starring Oscar nominee Felicity Huffman. It was ahead of its time.
At the “About Ray” screening in Toronto, there was less talk about the transgender teen– Elle Fanning in a super performance– and more about the affordable apartment she and her family live in on New York’s Lower East Side. Also, none of the characters seemed to have jobs. Tate Donovan’s character lived in an Architectural Digest house in leafy Westchester County.
“The Danish Girl” is the better made of the two films. Eddie Redmayne’s transformation into Lily makes for a psycho sexual thriller and tragedy that people will be talking about for a long time. It’s beautiful to look at, too, as the main characters live very very well. No mention is ever made of how these folks pay the bills either.
Funniest line backstage after “The Danish Girl” premiere. Redmayne’s wife of just a few months, Hannah, said: “We ran into Jessica Chastain. She’d seen the poster for The Danish Girl and worried people would think it was about her!” No worries- despite the passing resemblance between fictional Lily and real life Jessica, Chastain is far and away the greater beauty!