Back for its eighth year, Translations is a four-day festival of transgender cinema and art, which this year ranges from the Buck Angel film Sexing the Transman to the live multimedia performance piece Gender Failure (see Stranger Suggests, p. 23) to way beyond, with 33 offerings total. Here are reviews of three of them; for the full schedule, go to

Pacific Northwest Ballet’s The Nutcracker is Back Onstage at McCaw Hall! Tickets start at $27.
Join PNB for a timeless tale of holiday adventure performed by PNB’s amazing dancers and orchestra.

It Gets Better

This sweet, stylish, charming Thai drama follows three lightly interwoven stories of genderqueerness, found in venues ranging from a Buddhist monastery to a "ladyboy" cabaret. The plot points are the stuff of melodrama (road trip! Imperiled nightclub!), but the beautiful and quirky cinematography brings a rewarding sense of fantasy to this world of transgender protagonists, antagonists, fetishists, and friendly acquaintances.

She Male Snails

Swedish filmmaker Ester Martin Bergsmark's feature film is described as "a mix of experimental documentary and poetic narrative," and it's a beautiful thing to behold. Partially a portrait of transgender author Eli Leven, the film regularly gives way to impressionistic visual poems filled with rich imagery: a baby pulling berries off a bush, various scenes of nature in all its gorgeous weirdness. Situations and dramas rise up and assert themselves occasionally, but the film's dreamlike state is predominant and intoxicating.


Back after a featured run earlier this year at Northwest Film Forum, Charles Atlas's documentary/performance film follows the European tour of Antony Hegarty (of Antony and the Johnsons), whose stage show combines beautifully haunting music with artfully showcased women, many of whom are transgender or queer, and all of whom hold forth on their lives in behind-the-scenes interviews. It's mesmerizing.

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Translations runs May 9–12 at various locations. Full info at recommended

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