Lizzy’s review published on Letterboxd:
Can’t really say anything about this movie that’s positive in any light other than that they, like, knew how to work the camera, but I do have something to say about this movie: it’s very uncomfortable how much this movie chooses to linger on what Lara isn’t and juxtaposes that with images of what she wants her body to be. It doesn’t feel like the camera views her as a woman; despite all these people seeming to accept her, it feels like it views her as someone trying to be a woman rather than as the woman she already is. At every possible opportunity, we see Lara’s lack of breasts. At every possible opportunity, we see Lara’s genitals. At every possible opportunity, the movie grabs us and tells us “You see? You see how much of a woman she isn’t?” It’s disrespectful to trans audiences and for a movie that’s supposedly pro-trans, it’s a confusing and, when you really think about it, insulting creative decision to make.
This movie does not deserve your time or your attention, not simply for its dangerous way of depicting Lara’s experiences, but also for the fact that it paints trans people as miserable, pitiful figures for cisgender people to look at and feel sorry for, which we’re not. This movie is misery porn with no respect for its character or the audience it’s trying to reach, and of course it was directed by somebody who’s cis. I can guarantee you if this story about the trans experience was written and directed by a trans person, it would not be problematic. And if a trans movie is directed by a cis person, then I hope to God that it at least doesn’t turn out like this.
And lastly, and if you don’t want this movie spoiled, stop reading now, but words can’t even describe in retrospect just how dangerous that genital mutilation scene is for any trans youth that could be watching. After so much of this torture upon this trans character, you give them a “last resort” of cutting off their own genitals to be “complete” and to truly transition? Not only is this not the picture you want to paint for cisgender people about us, but what do you think that implies for the young trans girls that are watching? Did you even consider what they would think or take away from something like that? Did you even take a second to think about what kind of impact that would have?