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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars transform your views
I can fully understand why Felicity Huffman was nominated for an oscar but I don't understand why she didn't win! A fabulous performance by the Desperate Housewife as a 'man' waiting to complete his gender transforming surgery when he finds out he has a son.

A phone call from a NY prison to inform Bree his son is in prison throws her life completely upside...
Published on 12 May 2007 by RD

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Watched once.... Worth it.
An interesting and touching film that will touch home with many members of the transgender community, and maybe open the eyes of those for whom transgender is a new or troubling issue.
Published 20 months ago by Imogen Mann


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars transform your views, 12 May 2007
By 
RD - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
I can fully understand why Felicity Huffman was nominated for an oscar but I don't understand why she didn't win! A fabulous performance by the Desperate Housewife as a 'man' waiting to complete his gender transforming surgery when he finds out he has a son.

A phone call from a NY prison to inform Bree his son is in prison throws her life completely upside down. Her therapist refuses to sign her off for surgery until she faces everything from her past and is ready to move on. The surgery is scheduled for the following week and to go back on the list is out of the question for her. This prompts Bree to head down to NY if only to show she tried. Things don't turn out as planned when she offers to drive cross country back to LA with Toby so he can try his hand at acting.

What ensues is a wonderful journey not only through America but the life of Bree and Toby as they start to bond and really see each other. Very funny and touching movie.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an excellent film., 18 Nov 2006
By 
D. Schulten (London, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
This is essentially a movie exploring the relationship between a Father/Mother and son. The fact the mother is a transexual is incidental. The sympathetic, grounded acting of Felicity Huffman is simply astounding. Her performance, like the movie, constantly moved me in a way Brokeback Mountain did not. (but which everyone said would) This is understated filmaking of a high order and the writer/director and cast are to be congratulated on creating a touching, intelligent film, almost European in style, which never once 'preaches' or forces it's gender issues at you. Worth watching for Huffman's quite extraordinary performance alone. How she didn't receive an Oscar I'll never know.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heart warming, funny and serious., 6 April 2006
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
I went to see this film at the cinema, and i will be definitely buying this when it comes out on dvd.
Its truley brilliant, very funny, and heart warming, but with a serious edge to it. It follows the story of a transexual, just about to take the big step of going full on with the sex change. But as fate would have it, from her past her son calls (who she had never ever associated with since his birth).. and she reluctantly (at first) goes to his rescue, whilst he has no idea she is actually his father.
If anyone wants a good laugh or a good cry (in some situations) you have to own this film. It truely is an eye opener. I had no opinion on transexual, transgendered people, until i saw this film. Truely heart warming. A must.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Transfixing, 13 Jan 2007
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
Transamerica is truly one of the best films to have been recently created: I was transfixed throughout. As the previous reviews have outlined, Bree (Huffman) must seek and bail out her unknown son (Zegers) to prove to her therapist that she is ready for her operation that will finally make her a woman. The road trip taking them both back home is highly entertaining whilst moving at the same time. Both of these brilliant actors give outstanding performances as two tormented souls who seem to find themselves again through each other.

Bree's transformation from being slightly cold to warmly accepting her new maternal role is incredibly moving, especially the hospital scene which is by far the most poignant in the whole film. It's due to her blossoming relationship with her son that causes the audience to forget at times that Bree is not actually a biological woman. We are judging her on her merit as a mother not as a woman, which is a great achievement by both director and actor.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A woman playing a man wanting to be a woman., 29 April 2007
By 
Dr. J. Cree (Kilmacolm, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
A road movie featuring a man in the middle of his gender change and a drug addict son who has no idea his travelling companion is his father. Sounds like a barrel of laughs ... NOT. However that is exactly what it is. It is also poignant, moving, heart-warming and life affirming. The acting of the whole cast is exemplary but the performance of DESPERATE HOUSEWIFE Felicity Huffman is nothing short of astonishing. No wonder she picked up all sorts of awards and just failed to pick up the best actress gong at the Oscars. You might think it is not your cup of tea. Believe me,if you like watching movies this is your Earl Grey.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Transformations and journeys, 30 May 2007
By 
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
Transamerica is the story of Brie, a male to female transexual, a week away from her final gender reassignment operation, who suddeny discovers she has a teenage son. The boy, Toby, has been arrested for theft and possession of drugs.

Brie's therapist demands that she go and meet the boy, so she collects him from New York and they drive cross country together, back to Brie's home in LA.

Brie's gender dysphoria has been the central issue in her life. She has avoided relationships, friendships, a career, putting everything on hold until her reassignment. Toby has been working as a prostitute to support himself, and has his own issues about his body and sexuality.

The film shows their slow, fumbling towards a relationship, portrayed tenderly and perceptively.

A lot has been said about Felicity Huffman's performance. I agree it was great, but that should not take away from Zeggers performance as her son, Toby, which I thought was genuinely touching and real.

I would give this 4.5 stars if I could; definitely worth a piece of your of time.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable, 20 April 2006
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
This is essentially a very well crafted comedy of the road movie variety rather than a serious look at transgender issues. Some newspaper and magazine reviews have criticised the movie for this. However, I feel they are missing the point because from start to finish the movie deals with universal themes about family, belonging, acceptance and love. It does so in a light non-preaching way. The transgender theme allows for some very funny "mistaken identity" (or should that be "mistaken gender") comedy moments and it also allows the movie to tell us in a very gentle way that we are probably all more or less the same underneath the surface. Across the board the performances are spot on. The writing is excellent and the direction puts the focus squarely on the characters rather than on the changing scenery as is the case for so many road movies. This is heart warming, funny, well acted comedy.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "They were considered to have two souls", 26 Mar 2006
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
It's always refreshing around awards season to witness a performance by an actress that you know is going to make a big impression. In Transamerica, Desperate Housewives star Felicity Huffman just astounds, in a feat of acting that is nothing short of extraordinary. This is a poignant and often deliriously funny road-trip film and Huffman sinks her teeth into playing a sensitive, yet conflicted preoperative transsexual with such a refreshing candor that most viewers will be just blown away by the film.
The film marks an auspicious debut for writer-director Duncan Tucker, who spins a marvelous tale of a reluctant but curious dad who learns he has a son. The dad, however is soon to become a woman, and is now decked out in tasteful and chic pastels, but the film cleverly avoids the cliché's, thanks to Tucker's sensitive hand and the subtle work of Huffman and the rest of the pitch-perfect cast, especially Kevin Zegers as the lost-and-found offspring.
Huffman plays Bree/Stanley a self-contained preoperative transsexual who lives in her little Los Angeles bungalow, and works as a waitress in a local colourful Mexican restaurant. We first meet her a week before she is to have her gender reassignment surgery and her closest friend is her compassionate and kindly therapist, Margaret (Elizabeth Pena).
But just before the ultimate surgical step is due to take place, she receives a phone call from a 17-year-old New York inmate, who claims to be Stanley's son. Of course, Bree has come too far to let anything derail her surgery - she is so single-minded that she dismisses the unwanted disruption. However, when Margaret learns of the phone call and her patient's offspring, she refuses to OK the medical procedure until Bree goes to New York to address the matter.
Bree flies East to help the boy, who has run away from home after his mother's suicide. Allowing him to think that she is a Christian missionary - her upright, churchly bearing makes it easy to believe - she decides to take him back to rural Kentucky, where his stepfather lives. She buys a chartreuse station wagon to drive Toby cross-country, but Toby, rather than returning to Kentucky, wants to go to Los Angles where he expects to find his father living large and hopes to break into movies -- of the San Fernando Valley sort.
The film is full of unexpected twists and turns, as Bree and Toby traverse the country eating in homey little roadside cafes, staying in comfy hotels, and even camping out. Soon they're developing an uncommon and strangely likable bond. This is the land where banjos and acoustic guitars compete with the crickets and loons, and along the way they meet a variety of characters from a free-spirited vegan hitcher (Grant Monohon) to a gentlemanly New Mexico rancher (Graham Greene) who gallantly comes to Bree's assistance, more than a bit smitten.
It is only after an incident on the road that the couple is forced to confront Bree's parents in their kitsch Phoenix mansion. Her father, Murray (Burt Young), is an easygoing fellow in loose-fitting linen, but it is her mother, Elizabeth (the astonishing Fionnula Flanagan), who commands our attention. With her peroxide curls, silk pantsuits and heavy makeup, she might be an aging movie diva, and she has the volatile temperament to prove it. She's absolutely repulsed by her son's new look, but underneath the cold exterior, she's desperately trying to understand him.
The performances are all astounding, but this is Huffman's movie, and she totally steals the show, brilliantly embodying the complex layers of self-awareness and denial. She's prim and proper, but also raw and gutsy, and although she may not yet have totally got womanhood right, she's a lovely, sensitive kind hearted person, who we all know will end up being an absolutely gorgeous woman. It is not just that the actress plays a man who plays a woman, but also that she must impersonate a performer in the midst of learning a complicated role. Her performance is a complex metamorphosis - it is thrilling to watch and was the real Best Actress Oscar of 2005.
As she each day she paints on a face and puts on a voice to become more truly herself, her uneasy self-consciousness is a constant, especially when a child's innocent but discerning question plunges Bree into despair. As a boy who is tempted by cheap drugs and uses the art of seduction to get his way, Zegers conveys Toby's essential sweetness and hunger for real affection, making him much more than just a vain or damaged kid.
But what makes Transamerica one of the year's best films is the sensitive and intuitive way that Tucker presents the world of transexualism. He never judges Bree, or preaches, and throughout the story there is much to be learned about the history and place transsexuals once had in society. The astute and intelligent script weaves laugh-out-loud humor into his characters' longing for acceptance, but most importantly, the director treats Bree as a fully rounded person, with all her quirks, insecurities and foibles, rather than some kind of objective, and scientific case study. Mike Leonard December 05.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars keep smiling, 15 Oct 2006
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. There is just so much humour in it. A road movie with a message is not all that common. This film takes the viewer not only on a car journey but on a discovery trip as a father and son learn to be together again. The fact that dad has changed sex is an added complication which has to eventually be accommodated.

This movie challenges the viewer to check out their own perspectives and prejudices. As the story develops, one finds oneself shifting sympathies and wishing for a "happy ending". The humour and light heartedness does not hide the inner conflict that each of the main characters must be living through. They actually enhance the movie.

Kevin Zegers, plays the part of the unknowing son as any older teenager might when being indulged by an older woman. His inner battles become ever more apparent throughout the movie.

Felicity Huffman simply shines and portrays the transgender parent exquisitely, displaying strength, motivation, inner struggle and sensitivity. There is also a understated vulnerability that permeates her performance.

Get out the hankies, you will need them because there will be tears of laughter and sadness roughly at the same time. Enjoy it, I did.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great film which should be seen, 8 Oct 2007
This review is from: Transamerica [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
This is such a beautifully acted film which fully deserved the praise it has received from critics and audiences alike. The empathy you feel and have for Bree (Huffman's character) is largely due to Huffman's beautiful and subtle acting which in lesser hands could have seem forced. Through Huffman's protrayal you feel and understand just how awarkard and uncomfortable Bree feels and how desperate wants acceptance. Although the films deals with pretty heavy and major themes it is not in the lest bit preachy and although it is didactic in that it intends to teach people a moral, the films leaves the audience to make its own decisions and judgements. Kevin Zeggers provides an equally strong preformance as Huffman does as the wayward "son".

Rent or buy this movie and you won't be disappointed.
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Transamerica [2005] [DVD]
Transamerica [2005] [DVD] by Duncan Tucker (DVD - 2006)
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