Monday, March 27, 2023

‘National Anthem’ Review: Luke Gilford’s Light, Gender-Fluid Rites-Of-Passage Movie Blazes A Mild Trail Through The Wild West – SXSW

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Thankfully there seems to have been a moratorium lately on movies that mine the LGTBQ+ experience for tragedy and awards. There’s also been a move towards authenticity, notably in the area of casting trans actors for trans roles, and both of those factors help and hinder photographer Luke Gilford’s feature debut, a film as rich in personality as a Diane Arbus snap but, dramatically, about as punchy as an instalment of High School Musical. In another year, this might be more of a problem than it actually is, since, perhaps more by coincidence than design, National Anthem arrives at a time when everything it celebrates is under attack, and such a low-key affirmation of personal growth and freedom might actually be what we really need right now.

The star of the story is a young guy named Dylan (Lean on Pete’s Charlie Plummer, inhabiting a very similar role), who lives with his single mother Fiona and little brother Cassidy in the wide open spaces of New Mexico. To help his mother out with the family finances, Dylan looks for work as an unskilled laborer, lining up outside the drugstore with all the migrant workers. Which is how he comes to The House of Splendor, a ranch run by Pepe (Rene Rosado) and Sky (Eve Lindley) that acts as drop-in center for the weird and wonderful and that’s about to open his eyes — in more ways than one.

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Disclaimer: This story is generated from RSS Feed and has not been created or edited by Waba News. Publisher: Deadline


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