Tangerine (2015)

An interesting independent flick that pushes an exciting story through a basic but effective lens. 

After its slow start Tangerine comes into its own as an original, funny, and dramatic independent film that has the ability to transcend cinematic boundaries appealing to not only niche cinephiles, but to anyone interested in alternative lives.

Tangerine tells the story of two transgender sex-workers in the darker side of Hollywood. After her release from prison, Sin-dee (Kitana Kiki Rodriguez) and her friend Alexandra (Mya Taylor) hunt for Sin-Dee’s boyfriend and his apparent Mistress. Sean S. Baker’s original and emotional tale makes you feel equally uncomfortable and confused as the story unfolds and you see how people get wrapped up in this misunderstood industry.

For a film shot on an iPhone 6 with a widescreen lens adapter the cinematography is beautiful. Baker has highlighted that there is no limits to modern film-making and demonstrates to all of us aspiring and wannabee film makers that anything is possible. Telling such an interesting story through such a basic lens gives greater weight to the story, and merit of Baker and his teams work. The run and gun aspect of many of the shots really accentuate the intent mission Sin-dee is on through the film, it mixed with the static shots make for a great juxtaposition between Alexandra’s calmness and Sin-dee’s stress.

Baker and the cast do an amazing job of showing the human side of sex work. They highlight the dark side of Hollywood, the realness and emotion of these people, and the affect this can have on wider families. It creates a portrayal that subverts the norm and has the ability to continue to push boundaries and allow more people to question societies norms as it gains the traction and exposure it deserves.

For me this is a must see that I would recommend for anyone interested in independent film. This film really does have the ability to change views on such an important issue and I commend Baker for his work.

7.5/10

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