Edinburgh Cinema

Edinburgh’s cinemas have their own, different feel. When I visit them, I’ll be writing about both the film and the place, giving you the organic experience. Film critics on the big scale can’t really cater for this, so I hope my reviews bring something extra in this respect.

Get Out 04.06.17


Get Out

When, eventually, post-op romance will happen for me, how much of an issue will it be to be trans? I know it could be strange for my future other half, and not just directly. What will their friends think? Their family?

Enough about me, for now. Get Out is a horror comedy which mines the tensions of being brought home by one's beloved to meet the family, as an African-American man with a white, upper-middle class girlfriend. Particular stereotypes of the black man are thrown his way in the form of cringe-worthy compliments by family friends. The film has a Stepford Wives vibe to it, a community that is eerily accepting while in the background are suggestions that the welcome is not what it seems.

At this point I can say there is much that is funny and much which will make you jump about this film. I enjoyed sharing these moments with those around me in the cinema; the protagonist's best friend is particularly important with the comic relief, in calling with his opinions from the city beyond. By the end, though, I did think the film resorted to type, a just-about happy ending and an increasingly two-dimensional performance from the cast to make the linear narrative and resolution work.

Get Out, of course, comes at a time of increasingly strained debates in America about the experience of its African-American citizens. There is even a moment at the movie's end when you wonder if the protagonist will get framed for all the horrific deaths, but this might have been a step too far, from comedy to the bitter reality. Get Out instead tries to walk a sliver of a line between surrealism and that reality, and in providing a safe-of-sorts ending, leaves enough food for thought: how similar am I to the white community members smiling their vulpine smiles.

I recommend it as a horror comedy, therefore, and aren't the best horror films effective in saying something about the larger society? Get Out does this; it's not a great film, but it is unsettlingly entertaining and with the jumps and the laughter comes a reflection.

Back to me, and I wonder what a trans equivalent would be, or whether such an equivalent Stepford Wives film would even be possible. Aren't trans-women already supposed to be caricatures of the real thing? How, then, could we be reduced to a further caricature of ourselves. Does being trans in fact include its own identity, to be caricatured? Or are we just so focused on blending in as the gender we've always identified that there really isn't a 'trans' identity to mine? Perhaps this will change over time, but in the meantime, the one thing I don't doubt is the tension involved concerning a trans woman meeting her lover's family, and this would make for fascinating cinema, if and when it happens.
Wonder Woman
The Beatles: Sgt Pepper and Beyond


No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Saturday, 26 September 2020

Captcha Image

What's On This Week

My Latest Posts

July 01, 2020

Silenced by The Scotsman

​ On 11 June, The Scotsman published a deeply hostile article against transgender rights and activism in an opinion piece about the JK Rowling furore by its deputy political editor Gina Davidson. After much distress, I wrote a counter article which The Scotsman quietly ignored, after they had offered to pass it on to their Comment Editor. I experie...
May 11, 2020

The Book of Queer Prophets, curated by Ruth Hunt

in Books

  The Book of Queer Prophets: 24 Writers on Sexuality and Religion The historically fraught relationship between Abrahamic religions and LGBT+ identities provides the backdrop to The Book of Queer Prophets , a collection of twenty-four meditations by public figures who identify as both religious and LGBT+. The book's curator, the for...
May 09, 2020

Queer/Transgender short film: Mesmeralda

Joshua Matteo's short film, Mesmeralda , merging horror with esoterica, is now out on youtube . As with his previous work Metanoia , we see youthful trans actors racing through the empty streets of a moonlit New York, haunted by symbols and stalked by a masked figure of violent intentions. Mesmeralda , as described by Matteo, is the companion ...
March 08, 2020

Sterile like the moon: the joys of transgender healthcare

Sterile like the moon: the joys of transgender healthcare Summer, 2016: Gina's Big Bang, as transitioning begins A bureaucratic question in a sun-lit room. My medical practitioner asks me if I intend to have children. The question lingers, but the self-loathing is instant. No, I won't be having children. The practitioner nods. She moves on to the n...
November 10, 2019

General Election

General Election 12 December 2019 I spent the last election in an office, alone but for the company of a colleague. We watched the BBC's coverage while I drank wine, downbeat and expecting austerity and the absence of hope to triumph. Then we saw the exit poll and hung around, disbelieving at the sight of the kindled embers and lukewarm glow of a f...
October 05, 2019


October 05, 2019


Joker The trailer did its work, flashing images of anomie and fury perfectly pitched for these unstable times of precarious working conditions, grievance and institutional indifference. For these same reasons, Joker , directed by Todd Phillips and starring Joaquin Phoenix as the protagonist, has attracted pre-release criticisms like few other recen...
September 29, 2019

Resisting Whiteness event 2019

Resisting Whiteness one-day event, Edinburgh Returning for the second consecutive year, Resisting Whiteness came yesterday to the Pleasance Theatre in Edinburgh, providing an intense and inspiring series of panels, as well as a wonderful spoken word section, and a final segment based around the documentary short Invisible by internationally-acclaim...
August 21, 2019

Hearty by Emma Frankland

Hearty by Emma Frankland Raw and dripping with punk aesthetic, this one-woman-show's one-woman emerges in ripped tights and a T-shirt that paraphrases loudly the words of anti-trans theorist Germaine Greer: Lop Your Dick Off. My first impression of Emma Frankland is edgily uncertain and in awe, her Lady-Gaga-looks combined with Heath Ledger's mesme...
August 21, 2019

Pronoun, Pass, & Amnesty International

Transgender drama: Pronoun To be clear at the outset, this was the production of a youth theatre group, not a highly resourced team of experienced, professional career actors – although some of the performances left a powerful impression, and the show as a whole achieved some remarkable moments. Pronoun , written by Evan Placey, follows the transit...