Transgender Studies: Film & Television of Interest
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TitleYearCountryShort/FeatureRunning TimeGenreDescriptionInformationDistributionTrailerView in FullLGBTQ
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(A)sexual2011U.S.Feature1:15:00DocumentaryThis documentary explores people who are asexual and who face discrimination from other sexual minority communities. The film does an outstanding job of looking at stereotypes about asexual peopleIMDBTheatricalYouTubeiTunes
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52 Tuesdays2013AustraliaFeature1:49:00DramaWinner of the Best Dramatic Directing Award at Sundance and Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival, 52 Tuesdays focuses on the relationship between a sixteen-year-old girl and her mother, who is coming out as a trans man. The film is a beautiful and artistic piece in and of itself because the actors were not professional and were given the script only one week at a time, and the film was filmed only on Tuesdays.websiteTheatricalYouTubeStreamT
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A Florida Enchantment 1914U.S.Feature1:03:00ComedySidney Drew directed this early Hollywood silent film that explores gender stereotypes. A young woman swallows some mysterious seeds and turns into a man. A young man swallows the same seeds and turns into a woman. The film has some very problematic racial stereotyping (there are people in blackface) and gender stereotyping about men and women. It is a very early film depiction of the ways that society finds women trading up on the gender power pole to be amusing while men who trade down on the gender power pole are ridiculed and physically violated.IMDBYouTubeGender
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A Girl Like Me: The Gwen Araujo Story 2006U.S., GermanyFeature1:28:00Biography, DramaThis made-for-television film is based on the true story of Gwen Araujo, a young trans woman of color who was murdered by four men because she was transgender.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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A Place in the Middle: A Strength-Based Approach to Gender Diversity and Inclusion 2015U.S.Short0:35:00DocumentaryThis short film is easily accessible and aired on PBS in 2015. Taking the part of the documentary Kumu Hina that focuses on a middle school youth who identifies outside the gender binary, this award-winning film looks at intersecting identities and ways to combat bullying and bring about inclusion.websitePBSwebsitewebsiteGender
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A Self-Made Man2013U.S.Feature0:57:00Documentary, BiographyThe focus of this documentary is on the work that a trans man, Tony, does with gender-nonconforming youth and their parents to create a safe space for the entire family.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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Aboriginal People’s Television Network Investigates: Two-Spirit, Part 1 2014CanadaFeature1:00:00Documentary TVThis is an episode on Two-Spirit people in Canada. It is an in-depth news series.TVAPTN NewsT
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After Stonewall1999U.S.Feature1:28:00DocumentaryThis documentary looks at the LGBTQ+ rights movement in the thirty years between 1969 and 1999. Several leaders in the LGBTQ+ community are interviewed.First Run FeaturesDVD/iTunesYouTubeFirst Run FeaturesLGBTQ
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Against the Law 2017U.K.Feature1:24:00Biography, Drama, History A biography, drama, and history all rolled into one. This film, written by Brian Fillis and Peter Wildeblood, examines a time in the 1950s when Wildeblood was imprisoned for being gay, since homosexuality was illegal in the U.K. at that time. The film includes interviews with elderly gay men in Britain who were arrested under the Criminal Amend-ment Act (an anti-homosexual law).IMDBTV MovieYouTubeBBC YouTubeG
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Amazing Graces — Dr. Barry, the Female Doctor in the All-Male British Army2014IrelandShort0:12:00DocumentaryThis YouTube video from the Irish Audio Project covers the life of Dr. James Miranda Barry with historic facts and excellent visuals. Although the video does sensationalize the charwoman’s claims about Barry’s genitals, it focuses more on the fact that Barry made major and lasting medical reforms in South Africa. Until his death in 1865, he hid a shocking secret - Dr. James Barry was born a woman, in County Cork, Ireland.YouTubeYouTubeT
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Apache 82011U.S.Feature0:57:00DocumentaryThis documentary film focuses on a group of women from the White Mountain Apache Tribe who fight wildland fires throughout the United States. The film explores intersecting identities and gender stereotypes. Although there is no trans content in this film, it is an excellent look at binary gendered expectations for womenIMDBPBS NewshourYouTubeYouTube
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Apricot Groves2016ArmeniaFeature1:18:00Drama, RomanceThis complex and beautifully filmed drama focuses on an Iranian-Armenian young trans man who lives in the United States. He travels to Armenia to propose to his Armenian girlfriend he met in the United States.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Ascendance: The Angels of Change Documentary2015U.S.Feature1:15:00Documentary
Focusing on youth and mentors from the Center for Trans Youth Health and Develop-ment at Children’s Hospital LA, this documentary explores the 2014 Angels of Change show. This positive film shows the connections between trans elders and trans youth as they work together to be completely visible as trans people not only on the runway during the show, but in life as they embrace true gender diversity.
IndieWireT
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Becoming Chaz 2011U.S.Feature1:20:00Documentary, BiographyChaz Bono, the adult child of the stars Cher and Sonny Bono, made headlines when he came out as a trans man. This documentary film follows his transition and includes interviews with family and friends.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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Before Stonewall1984U.S.Feature1:27:00Documentary, HistoryThis documentary looks at early LGBTQ+ rights leaders in the years leading up to the Stonewall Rebellion. Of particular note, the film interviews Barbara Gittings from the Daughters of Bilitis and Harry Hay from the Mattachine Society. The main focus of the film is on the early homophile movement. Transgender people are, more or less, left out of the film.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon DiscLGBTQ
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Better Than Chocolate1999CanadaFeature1:38:57Comedy, Drama, RomanceAn entire community of friends composed of lesbians, gay men, heterosexuals, bisexuals, and trans people is the focus of this comedy romance. This Canadian feature film does an outstanding job of looking at a diverse LGBTQ+ community and a parent’s acceptance of her daughter’s diverse community.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeYouTubeLGBTQ
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Big Eden2000U.S.Feature1:18:00Comedy, Drama, RomanceWinner of numerous film-festival awards, Big Eden looks at an idyllic world in a small Montana town where the entire community wants the gay protagonist, who has returned home from New York, to be happy. Stereotypes about rural communities being homophobic are overturned in this heartwarming romance.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeG
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Bikini2005SwedenShort0:07:00AnimationLasse Persson from Stockholm, Sweden, creates a charming animated video about a young trans person taking a risk by wearing a bikini to the beach. This is a lighthearted short film that was shown in numerous LGBTQ+ film festivals around the world.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeYouTubeT
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Black Is Blue2014U.S.Short0:21:00DramaAmerican filmmaker Cheryl Dunye explores an African American trans man’s journey as a security guard as he navigates passing as a man and keeping his job. Dunye’s short film looks at the intersections of race and gender and the issues of job security for trans people.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeVimeoT
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Border Café (Café Transit)2005Iran/GreeceFeature1:45:00Drama, Romance
Although there is nothing trans about this feature-length drama, it is still a radical and outstanding exploration that provides cultural and political context for anyone wanting to study the ways that women are confined in Iran. When a widow takes over her husband’s restaurant, it is illegal and unsafe for her to be in the dining room serving customers, many of whom are men, because the road is on a major trucking route. In Farsi, Greek, Turkish, and Russian with English subtitles
IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeGender
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Boy I Am2006U.S.Feature1:12:00DocumentaryMany trans documentaries focus on people as they transition. This film explores the nuances and complexities found within a lesbian feminist community in New York when some of their members come out as trans men.KanopyTheatricalYouTubeKanopyT
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Boy Meets Girl2014U.S.Feature1:35:00Comedy, Drama, RomanceWinner of multiple independent film awards, this romantic comedy takes place in rural Kentucky and focuses on a young trans woman who falls in love with a cisgender woman while she also does not realize that her cisgender male best friend is in love with her. The film beautifully navigates gender identities and sexual orientation from bisexual, lesbian, and heterosexual identities.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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Boys Don't Cry1999U.S.Feature1:58:00Biography, Crime, Drama
Hilary Swank won an Oscar for this dramatization of the story of Brandon Teena, a young trans man who was brutally murdered in Nebraska by men who were furious that he was dating a local cis woman. This dramatization is more violent than the documentary The Brandon Teena Story.
IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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Bro'Town2004New Zealand32 Episodes0:30:00AnimationThis animated television series from New Zealand follows a group of boys in a Catholic boys’ school. The principal of the school is a Fa’afafine and is depicted in a positive light. One episode in particular, in which the principal is nearly lynched by an angry and ignorant mob, shows that transphobic stereotypes can be heavy material, the show manages to be humorous.IMDBTVYouTubeT
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Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin2003U.S.Feature1:23:00DocumentaryThis documentary film explores the lifelong activism of Bayard Rustin, an African American, Quaker, pacifist, and gay activist. Rustin is one of the unsung heroes of the 1960s Civil Rights movement. He almost singlehandedly organized the historic 1963 March on Washington at which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon discLGBTQ
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But I’m a Genderqueer2011U.S.Short0:12:00Documentary, ComedyA short film that explores a genderqueer identity.IMDBTheatricalQ
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Butterfly2014IrelandShort0:13:00DramaThis short documentary focuses on a trans couple who both live with Asperger’s syndrome. It is a warm film that shows the ways that they support each other and the ways that their small community supports them. It is also an excellent look at people who are on the autism spectrum.IMDBITV UKDaily MailT
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Cabaret1972U.S.Feature2:04:00Drama, MusicalThis iconic film starring Liza Minnelli is a music-filled look at Weimar Berlin, which was a city open to diverse sexual orientations and gender identities before the Nazi Party came to power. Cabaret won eight Oscars and three Golden Globes.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamGender
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Call Her Ganda2018U.S./PhilippinesFeature1:33:00DocumentaryThis painful and beautiful documentary film looks at the life of Jennifer, a young trans woman in the Philippines, who was murdered by a U.S. Marine in a transphobic rage. Through interviews with Jennifer’s family and friends seeking justice for the murder of their loved one, this film explores the complexity of the United States’ relationship as a colonial power in the Philippines.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamT
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Call Me Kuchu2013Canada/UgandaFeature1:27:00Documentary, DramaThis award-winning documentary follows the various iterations of the anti-homosexuality bill in Uganda. Featured in the film are scenes with the late LGBTQ+ activist David Kato and the tireless ally for the community Bishop Christopher Senyonjo. Also featured is John Abdallah Wambere (Longjones), who contributed to “Writings from the Community” in Chapter 7 of this book.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamLGBTQ
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Canada in a Day2016CanadaShort0:02:00VideoThis very short video gives the viewer a chance to meet Tru Wilson, the Canadian teen trans advocate.Canadainaday.caOnlineCanadainaday.caT
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Catalina de Erauso, La Monja Alférez (Año 1592)2016SpainShort0:23:00VideoCatalina de Erauso’s life is explored in this short YouTube video. The video is in Spanish.OnlineYouTubeT
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Chavela2017U.S.Feature1:30:00Documentary, Biography, HistoryChavela Vargas, a renowned singer, was the lover of the iconic Méxicana artist Frida Kahlo and collaborated with the famous Spanish film director Pedro Almodóvar. This documentary film, which premiered at the 2017 Berlin International Film Festival, looks at her life and her work as a sexual and gender outlaw.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamGender
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Coming Out in the 1950s 2011U.S.Short0:15:00DocumentaryPhil Siegel’s first documentary in a series of four explores the lives of people who came out as gay, lesbian, bisexual, and/or transgender in the 1950s. The sexual orientation and/or gender identity of most of the people interviewed in the film was illegal when they first came out of the closet.YouTubeLGBT
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Coming Out in the 1960s 2013U.S.Short0:26:00DocumentaryThis second documentary by Phil Siegel explores the changing times from the 1950s into the 1960s as different people are interviewed about coming out of the closet during the decade of the Civil Rights movement, women’s movement, the peace movement, the United Farmworkers’ movement, and the beginning of the LGBTQ+ rights movement.YouTubeLGBT
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Coming Out in the 1970s 2014U.S.Short0:16:00DocumentaryPhil Siegel’s third documentary includes him and others who came out of the closet right after the Stonewall Rebellion in New York ushered in the modern-day LGBTQ+ rights movement. The 1970s are seen as a time of fast-paced LGBTQ+ rights, activism, and partying.YouTubeLGBT
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Coming Out in the 1980s 2015U.S.Short0:17:00DocumentarySiegel’s final documentary in this series includes the author of this textbook. The 1980s were marked by the beginning of the AIDS pandemic and the lack of healthcare and governmental intervention to help those suffering.YouTubeLGBT
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Creating Gender Inclusive Schools 2016U.S.Short0:21:00Documentary, FamilyPeralta Elementary School in Oakland, California, is the site of an inclusive teaching method, Gender Spectrum. This short documentary demonstrates the ways that teachers and students can have safe and empowering conversations about gender diversity in school settings.IMDBYouTubeNew Day FilmsGender
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Dance to Miss Chief 2010Canada/GermanyShort0:05:00Music VideoThe Cree Two-Spirit artist Kent Monkman’s music video humorously critiques Germany’s fascination with Indigenous people in the Americas. Monkman’s alter ego, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle, uses a mix of archival and current images depicting First Nations people.OnlineYouTubeTwo-spirit
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Dear Lou Sullivan2016U.S.Short0:30:00Documentary, BiographyIn this short documentary (part of the We’ve Been Around series of documentaries), the trans filmmaker and historian Rhys Ernst explore the life and legacy of Lou Sullivan, a gay trans man, AIDS activist, and founder of FTM International.IMDBTheatricalVimeoT
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Deep Run2015U.S.Feature1:15:00Documentary, Drama, FamilyThe setting for this film is rural North Carolina, where conservative Christianity is seen as the only religion. The focus of Deep Run is on Cole, a young trans man, who is rejected by his family, bullied at school, and shunned in his church. Ashley, Cole’s girlfriend, also struggles with being queer and being rejected by the church. An outstanding film that looks at social and religious pressure to conform to cisgender and heterosexual expectations.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeiTunesT
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Different for Girls1996U.K.Feature1:32:00Comedy, Drama, RomanceStarring Rupert Graves and other mainstream British actors, this feature-length film follows the story of a friendship between two boys at public school who lose touch after graduation. Over a decade later, they run into each other again, and one of them is now a transgender woman. An intelligent and entertaining love story.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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Dorcas and Caster Semenya 2012South AfricaShort0:03:00DocumentaryThis is a poignant and powerful short documentary featuring Caster Semenya and her mother, who always tells her that she is beautiful the way God made her. There is a discussion about the intense chromosomal and drug testing Semenya was forced to undergo to be able to run track on the world stage when her womanhood was called into question.OnlineYouTubeT
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Draft Day2015ThailandShort0:09:00DocumentaryIn this short documentary, the viewer sees the process that trans women in Thailand go through as they wait to find out if they are going to be drafted into military service.OnlineYouTubeT
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Dream Girls1994U.K./JapanFeature0:50:00DocumentaryTakarazuka Revue is the focus of this documentary about the girls’ finishing school in Japan where only the best student in the class gets to be the man for a year of performance. The film does an excellent job of studying cisgender heterosexual women who fall at the feet of their masculine performing idols. Although some of the terminology is now outdated, this film includes interviews with the performers and gives the viewer a look into this unique school.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeWomen Make MoviesGender
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Envisioning Justice2008U.S.Short0:32:00DocumentaryPauline Park is a Korean-born trans woman who was adopted by white parents in the United States. This short documentary features Park talking about coming out as tran and her activist work in New York. Pauline Park has worked on the same issues of trans equality that Sylvia Rivera worked on. Pauline Park continues the fight for trans rights.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Fa’afafine Documentary2017Samoa, New ZealandFeature0:46:00DocumentaryThis documentary interviews several people who identify as third gender or Fa’afafine in Samoa and New Zealand. The interviewees discuss colonialism and its influence on their traditional third-gender identity. This is an empowering documentary that gives voice to Fa’afafine.YouTubeT
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Facing Mirrors (Aynehaye Rooberoo)2011IranFeature1:42:00DramaThis feature-length film in Farsi with English subtitles explores the life of Eddie, an Iranian trans man, and his friendship with an Iranian woman, Rana, who drives a taxi to support her family, which is forbidden by Iranian law. The film beautifully explores the similarities in their oppressions.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Finding Phong2015VietnamFeature1:32:00Documentary, Biography, DramaThis film works within two genres as a documentary and a video diary that explores a year in the life of Phong, a trans woman in Vietnam, as she begins her journey to transition. Phong’s biggest challenge is coming out to her large family living in a small village.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Fire1996Canada, IndiaFeature1:44:00Drama, RomanceDeepa Mehta’s groundbreaking lesbian feature film won numerous awards around the world. The film also brought about death threats. Fire changed the cinematic landscape for LGBTQ+ filmIMDBTheatricalYouTubeL
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Frankenstein1931U.S.Feature1:10:00Drama, Horror, Sci-FiThe iconic horror film looks at the mad doctor Victor Frankenstein and his monstrous creation. The scenes of the monster’s being an outsider speak metaphorically and broadly about being a marginalized figure.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStream
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Freak Show2017U.S.Feature1:31:00Comedy, DramaBilly is a gender-nonconforming teenager who gets sent to a small southern high school where the majority of the students uphold the belief in the gender binary, often violently. Despite being bullied, Billy still strives to become homecoming queen. This comedy looks at the serious bullying that goes on with gender policing while also managing to be uplifting.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeHulu, iTunesGender
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Frida2002U.S., Canda, MexicoFeature2:03:00Biography, Drama, RomanceSalma Hayek’s Oscar-nominated depiction of the famous bisexual and gender-fluid Mexican artist Frida Kahlo is the subject of this feature-length film. Despite being in constant physical agony after a horrible accident, Frida Kahlo spent her adult life painting. The LGBTQ+ community has embraced her as an icon.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamGender
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From This Day Forward2015U.S.Feature1:19:00Documentary, Biography, FamilyThere are numerous documentary films about young people coming out as trans, but fewer about parents who come out as trans. In this award-winning documentary, the filmmaker explores her father’s coming out as trans and her parents’ desire to remain together and keep their family completely intact. In a reversal of many trans narratives in which children must gain their parents’ acceptance, in this film a grown child is the person who must come to terms with her rigid thinking.IMDBTheatricalPBS POVStreamT
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Gazon Maudit (French Twist)1995FranceFeature1:44:00ComedyThis French comedy is about a heterosexual couple who invite their neighbor, a lesbian, to move in with them. This film explores stereotypes about rigid definitions of sexual orientation.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamL
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Gendernauts: A Journey through Shifting Identities (Eine Reise durch die Geschlechter) 1999U.S., GermanyFeature1:27:00DocumentaryThe director Monika Treut focuses this documentary on a group of trans people in San Francisco. This is one of the first films to explore trans identities both within and outside the gender binary.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeKanopyT
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Georgie Girl2001New ZealandFeature1:09:00DocumentaryGeorgina Beyer, who is Maori and lives in New Zealand, became the first openly transgender elected member of Parliament in the world. This award-winning documentary film follows her life and her groundbreaking work in politics as an advocate for equity and access for all people.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeKanopyT
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Girl Inside2007CanadaFeature1:10:00DocumentaryThree years in the life of Madison, a trans woman, are documented in this Canadian film. Madison’s relationship with her eighty-year-old grandmother and their conversations about gender, femininity, and the definition of “woman” are the focus of this film.IMDBTheatricalWomen Make MoviesT
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Girl Unbound: The War to Be Her 2016PakistanFeature1:20:00DocumentaryMaria Toorpakai, an outstanding squash player, was assigned female at birth but as a youth passed as a boy in order to play squash in a region of Pakistan controlled by the Taliban, who do not allow girls to go to school, much less play sports. This is a beautiful documentary about a gender-fluid squash player on the international stage whose biggest support comes from family in a region controlled by conservative religious ideals and laws.websiteTheatricalYouTubeGender
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Glen or Glenda? 1953U.S.Feature1:08:00DramaIt is difficult to pin down exactly what genre Ed Wood’s experimental trans film belongs to. On the one hand, this 1950s movie attempts to give a sympathetic portrayal of a trans woman. On the other, the film has a split narrative, as Bela Lugosi narrates a semi-Gothic story. Unlike Rocky Horror, which was released twenty years later, it is not clear if Glen or Glenda? is meant to be satiric or serious. It is most likely that it did influence the creation of Rocky Horror, however, and it is still a film worth watching for people wanting to trace the history of the depictions of trans people in film.IMDBTheatricalStreamT
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God’s Own Country2017U.K.Feature1:44:00Drama, RomanceThe director Francis Lee delivers a raw and stunning film that takes place in rural England on a sheep farm. The film works on several complex levels as a look at socioeconomics and the struggles of the rural poor who work the land, as well as issues concerning Romanian immigrants. The gay men in the film do not have an urban social life. Rather, they are farmers trying to make ends meet.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamG
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Growing Up Coy2016U.S.Feature1:23:00DocumentaryA Colorado family’s struggle to support their transgender six-year-old is the focus of this documentary. Their legal fight became a landmark civil rights case. An excellent look at the rights of parents and the rights of trans children.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeiTunes, NetflixT
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Happy Birthday, Marsha!2018U.S.Short0:14:00DramaThis film was researched, written, and directed by queer and trans artists and historians Reina Gossett and Sasha Wortzel. This short drama uses archival footage as well as dramatization to explore the lives of and love between Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera.websiteTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeT
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Harsh Beauty2005IndiaFeature0:53:00DocumentaryThis documentary film focuses on Hijras in India. Through interviews, the audience meets numerous Hijras and learns about their spiritual practice as well as the hardships of living on the streets in urban centers in India.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Hedwig and the Angry Inch 2001GermanyFeature1:35:00Comedy, Drama, MusicThis cult classic, which is now a Broadway musical, explores the complexity of love and gender diversity. Most notably, the song “The Origin of Love,” which talks about ancient people embodying multiple genders, is directly out of Plato’s SymposiumIMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamGender
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Hidden Figures 2016U.S.Feature2:07:00Biography, Drama, History This dramatization looks at the lives of the nearly forgotten brilliant African American women who worked at NASA and were crucial to the U.S. effort to send astronauts into space. Of particular note are the scenes where the women have to run across the NASA campus to find a bathroom they were allowed to use because the bathrooms in the buildings where they worked were for “whites only.”IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStream
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Hit and Miss2012U.K.TV Series6 EpisodesDramaThis is a quirky British thriller that focuses on Mia, a trans woman, who is also a contract killer. She moves to rural England to find her ex-girlfriend, only to become a stepparent to the children. Meanwhile, to make money, Mia continues as a contract killer.IMDBTVYouTubeAmazon PrimeAmazon Prime
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Hope along the Wind: The Life of Harry Hay2002U.S.Feature0:57:00Documentary, BiographyThis biopic and documentary focuses on the life of Harry Hay, the founder of the Mattachine Society, a gay men’s group that promoted gay rights beginning in the 1950s.IMDBTheatricalVimeoHarryHay.comG
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I Am Divine2013U.S.Feature1:25:00DocumentaryThe quirky and iconic U.S. film director John Waters worked for years with Harris Glenn Milstead, more famously known as Divine. Divine was featured in numerous films, most popularly Hairspray, in which she played Edna Turnblad. This documentary follows the life story of Divine as she empowered so many gender transgressors through her art.IMDBTheatricalVimeoStreamGender
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I’ve Been to Manhattan2012U.S.Video0:06:00Music VideoThis is Storm Miguel Florez’s first short film and music video. It is a comic film that features trans zombies in San Francisco.OnlineYouTubeT
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Intersexion2012New ZealandFeature1:08:00Documentary, BiographyThis award-winning documentary film presented by an intersex person from New Zealand explores stories of intersex people around the world. It is a very engaging and accessible film that looks at the intersections of sex, gender, race, and socioeconomics along with various issues and concerns about Western medical interventions.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeDSD (Difference In Sex Development)
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Joan of Arc1999U.S.TV Series3 EpisodesAdventure, Biography, DramaThis made-for-television film dramatizes the life of the famous cross-dressing saint.IMDBTVYouTubeStreamGender
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Junk Box Warrior2002U.S.Short0:05:00PerformanceMarcus Rene Van is a trans African American slam poet who critiques the gender binary in this experimental short film.OnlineYouTubeT
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Just Call Me Kade 2002U.S.Short0:26:00DocumentaryAn international award-winning documentary, this short film follows the story of a fourteen-year-old as he transitions from female to male. Kade and his family live in Arizona; his family is loving and supportive of his transition.OnlineYouTubeT
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Just Charlie2017U.K.Feature1:40:00DramaThis British drama focuses on a fourteen-year-old soccer star who everyone assumes is the boy and sporting hero they always wanted him to be. In reality, she is a young trans woman who just wants to be herself outside everyone’s expectations. This is a stunning film that looks at the ways friends and family can sometimes be divided between being resilient allies and antagonists who cause pain.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamT
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Ke Kūlana He Māhū: Remembering a Sense of Place2001U.S.Feature1:07:00DocumentaryOne of the people interviewed in this outstanding documentary says that the West imposed “the tyranny of the binary frame.” Ke K lana He Ma-hu- was the first film of its kind to look at gender diversity and sexual orientation in Indigenous Hawai‘ian culture. As a history lesson on both third-gender people and the colonial violence that nearly eradicated traditional Hawai‘ian culture, the film focuses on multiple levels of intersecting identities.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeGumroadGender
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Kinsey2004U.S.Feature1:58:00Biography, Drama, RomanceThis Oscar-nominated biopic looks at the life of Alfred Kinsey, the sexologist who invented the Kinsey Scale.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStream
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Kumu Hina2015U.S.Feature1:17:00DocumentaryHinaleimoana Wong Kalu (Hina) is a cultural icon and teacher (kumu) in Hawai‘i. She is Ma-hu- and has spent her life battling against the leftovers of colonial transphobia and homophobia. Kumu Hina teaches Indigenous Hawai‘ian values at a public school. This film is an in-depth documentary that delves into her life.websiteTheatricalYouTubewebsiteT
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La Mission2009U.S.Feature1:57:00DramaThis feature-length drama explores intersecting identities when a conservative Chicano father in a poor inner-city neighborhood finds out that his son is gay. This film was shot on location in San Francisco’s Mission District.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamG
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La Monja Alférez 1944MexicoFeature1:28:00Action, Adventure, Drama In this dramatization of the life of Catalina de Erauso, the filmmaker focuses on the sensational aspects of de Erauso’s life story. It is filmed in black and white and is in Spanish. Mexico release 1944, U.S. release 1945.)IMDBTheatricalYouTubeGender
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Lady Eva2017U.S.Short0:11:00DocumentaryThe directors of Kumu Hina explore the life of Lady Eva, a Leiti (third gender in Tonga) navigating Tongan culture that is often heavily Evangelical Christian and conservative — continuing legacies from colonization.websiteTheatricalYouTubeT
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Lady Sings the Blues1972U.S.Feature2:24:00Biography, Drama, MusicDiana Ross, Billy Dee Williams, and Richard Pryor star in this dramatization of the life of Billie Holiday.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStream
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Le Chevalier d’Eon2006JapanTV Series24 EpisodesAnimation, Action, Adventure D’Éon’s life has captured the imagination of Japanese writers in the twenty-first century, and this twenty-four-episode anime television series follows d’Éon’s adventures as a spy and a hero.IMDBTVYouTubeFunimationT
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Le Secret du Chevalier d’Éon1959FranceFeature1:36:00ComedyThis French film explores the life of d’Éon as a comedy and sensationalizes d’Éon’s life. It is a good film to compare to the sensationalized film focusing on de Erauso (La Monja Alférez) because it underscores a stereotype: when people understood to be men are cross-dressed, it is comedy; but when women are cross-dressed, it can be not only comedy but also adventure.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeGender
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Leitis in Waiting2018TongaFeature1:12:00DocumentaryTonga is the only South Pacific island to escape colonization; the effects of Western ideas about binary gender and racist attitudes have nevertheless influenced the island kingdom. This documentary film focuses on leitis, trans women whose job has been, for centuries, to serve the royal family of the island nation. This film explores the ways that Tonga is attempting to keep alive these ancient traditions that welcome gender diversity in the face of the onslaught of white, U.S. Christian missionaries who have been arriving there and who are trying to convert the Indigenous people.website Theatricalwebsite website T
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Li Yinhe: China’s First Female Sexologist2017U.S.Short0:04:00DocumentaryThis very short interview subtitled in English gives the viewer an insight into Dr. Li Yinhe and her pioneering work in sexology in China. She is married to a trans man.websiteOnlineT
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Lili Longed to Feel Her Insides 2011U.S.Short0:05:00DramaThis short film is a fairy tale that pays tribute to Lili ElbeOnlineVimeoT
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Little Axe (part of the We’ve Been Around docuseries)2016U.S.Short0:30:00Documentary, BiographyIn this series of trans documentaries, the director and artist Rhys Ernst looks at historic trans figures who have nearly been forgotten. This short film focuses on the gospel singer Little Axe Broadnax and his family, who were fully supportive of him as a trans man. The film looks at the intersections of being poor, African American, and transgender in the early twentieth century.IMDBTheatricalAdvocate.comT
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Lives Worth Living2011U.S.Feature0:53:00Documentary, HistoryThis documentary takes a look at the positive effect of the passage of ADA laws for people with disabilities. An excellent look at the history of disability laws in the United StatesIMDBTheatricalPBS Independent Lenswebsite
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Ma Vie en Rose 1997BelgiumFeature1:28:00DramaAlthough there are many more choices now if you want to watch a film that looks at the lives and experiences that trans and gender-nonconforming children often have, this film remains a classic. This Belgian drama follows a young trans girl as her family and her community continually try to force her to be the boy she was identified as at birth.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeStreamT
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Major!2015U.S.Feature1:35:00Documentary, BiographyThis multiple award–winning documentary focuses on the life and continued pioneering work of Miss Major Griffin-Gracy. The film includes outstanding archival footage and interviews with Miss Major and her support network. Of particular note is her work with TGI Justice, a nonprofit organization that advocates for trans people in prison.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Man’s Favorite Sport?1963U.S.Feature1:21:00Comedy, RomanceRock Hudson and Paula Prentiss star in this comedy about a sports shop clerk who is supposed to be an expert sportsman, particularly in the area of competitive fishing; however, he actually dislikes sports in general and fishing in particular. Paula Prentiss loves sports and has to teach Rock Hudson how to be a real sportsman. Gender role reversals highlight gender stereotypes in this romantic comedy.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeGender
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Markova: Comfort Gay 2000U.S.Feature1:37:00Biography, Drama, History This film is based on the true story of Walter Dempster Jr., a gay elder who grew up in the Philippines during World War II. This biopic follows Dempster as he grows up with a violent and homophobic brother. Dempster identifies as a gay man, yet he often embrace a female identity. This is a terrific film that looks at the fluidity of gender and sexual orientation.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeAmazon PrimeGender
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Memphis Massacre 1866 Panel 2 2016U.S.Video1:20:00VideoThis outstanding YouTube video captures an academic panel at a conference exploring the ramifications of race riots in the nineteenth century in the United States. The presentations are given by African American historians and scholars. This video is an outstanding place to hear about the current academic work being done on reexamining this hidden history.OnlineYouTube
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Memphis Massacre: We Remember with Antonio Neal 2016U.S.Video0:07:00VideoThe modern Memphis historian Antonio Neal discusses the history of the massacre of African Americans in 1866 in this YouTube video.OnlineYouTube
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Memphis Riots of 18662013U.S.Video0:05:00VideoThis YouTube video contains excellent archival images of Memphis and the 1866 riots as well as photographs of the African American community in the city at that time. The photos are accompanied by music, but there is no dialogue.OnlineYouTube
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Mind If I Call You Sir?2004U.S.Short0:30:00DocumentaryThis is a documentary about Latinx trans men. (Latinx or Latin@ are now often used instead of Latino or Latina, which are rooted in the gender binary. The “x” or the “@” leaves room for gender diversity.) It is one of the few existing documentaries that explores trans issues within Latinx culture.IMDBDVDDVDGender
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More Than T2017U.S.Feature0:54:00DocumentaryThis documentary film looks at intersecting identities and explores the ways that trans people are often defined only by their gender identity. The trans people in this film are from all walks of life: Asian/Pacific Islanders, African Americans, Two-Spirit people, AIDS survivors, and spiritual leaders.IMDBTheatricalYouTubeT
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Mulan1998U.S.Feature1:28:00Animation, Adventure, Family Disney’s animated musical loosely follows “The Ballad of Mulan.” Though it is replete with the usual Disneyesque characters, there are still some songs within the film that are particularly heartrending and pertinent to trans viewers.DisneyTheatricalYouTubeStreamGender
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