The Riveting Experience of Watching "Girl" on Netflix
Ballet is famous for the perfection, sacrifice, resilience and determination associated with those who perform it. It's not surprising that a gripping movie such as Girl, about a young trans teenager embarking on hormone therapy and gender-affirming surgery, is made all the more vivid and clear by being placed in the ballet world.
Lukas Dhont films a beautifully direct story of Lara, which was actually inspired by a real trans dancer he had read about in an article at age 18. Just 15 at the time, her name was Nora Monsecour. Since then, the two worked on a creation for 10 years that has touched audiences and critics in a powerful way. The art form's physically demanding nature mirrors Lara's fraughtness over her desire to achieve the near supernatural technique required for a professional ballet dancer with a body that's holding her back, physically and emotionally.
One of the most interesting things about Girl is how incredibly divisive it is. After receiving multiple awards at Cannes as well as a Netflix distribution deal, shots were fired from the trans community and film critics alike. From calling it "trans trauma porn" to just simply dangerous for the trans community, it propels a truly important discussion to who tells these stories and how.
Real life subject Monsecour had her say in the matter after the backlash, writing an article of her own in Hollywood Reporter declaring, "Those criticizing Girl are preventing another trans story from being shared in the world, and are also attempting to silence me and my trans identity. Every day, I see young, transgender people fighting for their dreams, accomplishing their goals. They are not weak and fragile. Girls tells my story in a way that doesn’t lie, doesn’t hide."
Dhont assures us in The Guardian, “I think the film shows this character a lot of love. So no, I don’t in any way think that it is a harmful film. I think it’s a very loving film..."
The coming of age drama is now available on Netflix. Have a look and tell us what you think! Check out a behind the scenes Netflix featurette on the film below: