Monday, March 17, 2008

Southern (Un)Comfort

Can't say I've seen anything like that before. But if you remove all the variables, it's just a simple documentary I think. But at an all-male school, the variables are very important: transgender relationships, which technically end up being...heterosexual relationships. It was mind-blowing but at the same time, discomforting. My problem with it was, the main character, he (I'll take him for what he is) said that he's always been a heterosexual male. And it seems all the actions (or all the parts shown on the documentary) is supposed to reaffirm that by showing traditionally manly stuff. Guns, ribs, beer, bare chest. I think that a showing of them being transgender alone is a variable that in some way still conforms, if I may, to the usual gender roles. Lola said she (it's harder for me to say she's a she, but what the hey) now felt more like a housewife or something. My problem perhaps was (and I'm faulting this on the characters or the documentary person) that gender roles were not switched. Not even found arbitrary. What resulted was that one gender desired to be another so badly, and although crossing the line to the other side, didn't see that there was no line or any other side. Did they switch gender roles and still conform to them?
Robert, I took him for what he told me he was, a male heterosexual. But even then, I sincerely doubted how any male hetersexual could've been with Lola, who didn't have breasts or any woman features, just dressed as such. Lola was very obviously a man. But if gender is performance, then Lola abides by that. She performed as a woman though obviously a man. Robert didn't feel like a man, presumably, until he looked like a man. And had most the body parts. He took out the breasts--I guess all women want to run around topless, I can see that, and state now that I have no problem with that. Whatsoever.
But before I disseminate into more "problems" I found with the film, I'd like to say that the treatment of Robert basied on his transgender-ness by the doctors, was pretty much messed up. The doctors, who've taken the Oath of Hypo-something, to help out all human beings at their fullest abilities (I'll try not to comment on the U.S. joke of a medical system), refuse to try to save his life. Because of some "moralistic" stance or simply business (didn't wanna lose patients). Whatever the level of disagreement, it shouldn't occur at the point where the life is sacrificed for the lifestyle.
I also found it very interesting that this was located in some rural town in Georgia, rather than some "liberal" Northeastern or West-Coast state. But I guess that explains the lack of doctors willing to save a transgender life.
Nonetheless, in summation, I found it very interesting--admittedly not something I'd willingly watch again (I don't wanna see old people making out, no matter what they are), I'd be interested in discussing it.

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