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Monday, October 10, 2011

She's a Boy I Knew - film review by guest blogger Bren

In her documentary She’s A Boy I Knew, Gwen Hayworth takes viewers along on a candid journey through her transformation from Steven to Gwen, with a humor, depth, and grace that left me laughing and crying and inspired.

“My worst fear still is that some idiot out there in the world will kill you.” These are the words spoken to Steven by his mother in regard to his transition. They’ve been spoken many times before, and they will be spoken many more times. My own mother spoke these same words to me when I came out to her. On the anniversary of Matthew Shepard’s death, these words hold extra poignancy, for me. It should be a Mother’s job to love and worry about her child; and there is no shortage of this motherly love in She’s A Boy I Knew. In fact, the amount of love and care Gwen is surrounded with, by her family and friends, as she transitions from Steven, is heartwarming. I found myself cheering her on her loved ones for being such a strong support system. If only each and every one of us could be so lucky.

From trading in bird-seed boobs for augmented ones; through electrolysis, suppression meds, and hormone therapy;through evolving relationships; all the way to her bottom surgery, Gwen weaves her story of transition, sewn together by home movies, childhood pictures, phone messages, animation, and interviews with those closest to her.

Infusing the documentary with humor and cartoons throughout, Gwen breaks up some of the serious subject matter, offering a balanced and well told story. I laughed out loud when Gwen’s mother tells her that if she’s going to be a girl, she must act like one, and that means to call more often.

This isn’t simply a story of coming out to one’s family, or a tale of transition, this is a story of love. Gwen shows us what it is like to have what every member of the LGBTQ community craves and deserves: love and acceptance.

Click HERE to stream She's a Boy I Knew' on the Busk Films website.

Follow Bren on Twitter at @radbren13