Distributor: Some Shorts
May 2018Watch Trailer
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Director: Sophie Dros
2017, Netherlands, 67 Minutes, DCP
Language: Dutch with English subtitles
NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
This visually expressive documentary focuses on five genderfluid people living in the Netherlands, weaving intimate interviews with scenes of direct observation, while also reserving room for impressive spells of aesthetic flight. Each subject is granted the room to express themselves fully, telling stories of self-discovery as well as of social hardships, but seemingly always on their own terms. Brimming with humility, director Sophie Dros’ Genderbende unites form with content in a delicate approach, resulting in an enthralling work of admirable purpose.
The connective tissue of Genderbende is the taut curation of interviews, which always manages to cultivate a more intimate space and never feel routine. However, it’s the scenes of observational cinema that reveal the true depths of each subject’s experience. Every gesture of confidence seems undermined by the scrutinizing eyes of strangers, and how each person contends with such an interaction speaks bounds about their character. In a particularly striking scene, one of the subjects visits a salon where there’s a beautician who can’t resist indulging in her curiosity. An unexpectedly candid, yet tenuously balanced conversation follows that serves to exemplify the sort of battle for unquestioned legitimacy with which each person wrestles.
Though Genderbende is saturated with brighter pastel hues, it has a certain kinship to the similarly stylish Dark Days. Rhythmically flowing and supremely personable, Dros’ concise study emanates that same praiseworthy air of cool. (Mitchell Goodrich)
WE FORGOT TO BREAK UP
Chandler Levack, 2017, Canada, 16 MIN
After a few years absence, Evan unexpectedly returns one night to face his now-famous former bandmates. The surprise reunion is bittersweet, in this intimate depiction of the knotty complexities of relating to old friends after everything has changed.
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