Five days ago, Lana Wachowski accepted the Human Rights Campaign’s Visibility Award in San Francisco, and delivered a speech that has received a fair amount of attention. As you can see in the clip above, she easily won over the audience… but her sense of humor and touching frankness about what it was like growing up as a girl trapped inside a boy’s body should win over more people than this sympathetic crowd. Lana was born as Laurence in 1965, but became “Lana” sometime after making Speed Racer with her brother in 2008. Right now, the siblings are promoting their latest film, Cloud Atlas.
Wachowski is doing her best to portray transgender people in a positive way. There have been a few movies about them that collectively try to make audiences think twice. Transamerica (2005) is a road movie carried by a strong Felicity Huffman performance, although it isn’t as profound as it would like to be. In the same category of talked-about films we find The Crying Game (1992) and Boys Don’t Cry (1999). Others that have received less attention include Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Wild Side, Beautiful Boxer, Flawless and the documentary Southern Comfort. Two years ago, a Swedish documentary called Regretters introduced two men who had gone through a sex change… and then changed their minds again. Go explore.