As I began to watch the ASL Films’ production of “Versa Effect” — a film told entirely in American Sign Language — ASL, I was a bit troubled when I saw that the producers of the film decide to use an old Hollywood gimmick — swapped gender roles — as a major element of the film’s story. If done right, it wouldn’t be too offensive, but somehow in the back of my mind I could see a major trans smackdown headed my way.
Sure enough, at one point, one of the characters in the film, an “aunt” portrayed by actress Crystal Finlay, signed: “transgender, S-I-C-K!‘ with a look of disgust on her face — supposedly for a humorous effect. Later on in the film, “Dr. Chance”, portrayed by actress Rita Corey, fingerspelled “f-r-e-a-k-s-h-o-w” while showing utter contempt — another attempt at mocking trans people for a humorous payout.
Fact: the story is such an embarrassingly bad mess that it becomes quite clear that the writer, Mark Wood, used transphobic dialogue solely for the laughs he could get for them. There is no redeeming purpose for the usage of such dialogue.
I understand Sprint Relay (the wireless giant) had a hand in the financing of this film. I wonder how they feel about being party to this transphobic mess?
THE GUERRILLA ANGEL REPORT is associated with Wipe Out Transphobia: http://www.wipeouttransphobia.com/
Read Lexie Cannes in The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/courtney-odonnell/