A dark exploration of adolescence, starring trans actress Stav Strashko
I IS FOR ISRAEL
I’ve been a long time fan of Stav Strashko and she is my dreamcast for the lead character in my novel. So seeing her perform in a feature film was exciting and I was naturally fully expecting to connect, although a little vary that an Israeli film centured around queerness will inevitably feature some pink-washing. It turned out to be quite the opposite: a story that could happen anywhere with a very specific flavor of Israeli adolescence. Three girls, played by Strashko and equally talented Netsanet Mekonen and Noam Lugasy , are struggling with growing up surrounded by strict beauty standards, so they decided to take a gamble with their lives and trust a sketchy woman Keren (haunting Asi Levy) who promised to solve all their problems. Sass, cruelty and shared vulnerabilities make this a perfect, yet nuanced portrayal of what it feels like being in high school, especially when you’re different. I also appreciated it for being a ruthless examination of the ridiculous prom and teenage romance culture that permeates Western and westernized cultures—I love to rant about these things, and was happy to see the issue reflected in cinema.
Flawless (Haneshef), 2018
Director: Tal Granit & Sharon Maymon
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