KJIPUKTUK (Halifax) – At the 2019 FIN Atlantic International Film Festival, three new shorts were screened that were part of the National Film Board of Canada’s Re-Imagining Nova Scotia series.
Alex Kronstein went to see all three of them, and here is his review of I Am Skylar, directed by Rachel Bower, about a young transgender woman from Cape Breton.
I Am Skylar is about 14-year-old Skylar Côté, a young transgender woman from Mira Gut, Cape Breton.
Skylar’s parents, Jill and Marcel, talk about how difficult it was at first for them to hear that their son saw himself as a girl, and how they eventually came to accept and support her for who she really is.
Skylar shares that she tries to be open about who she was in the past and to accept and acknowledge who she was without being angry about her past life.
We also meet Skylar’s younger brother Joshua, who has a rare genetic condition called hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia, which affects the hair, skin, teeth and nails. Jill and Marcel talk about how when Josh was diagnosed, they didn’t know what would happen next, yet that dealing with the unknown helped prepare them for what Skylar would later deal with.
Easily one of the most poignant moments is when Skylar’s family surprises her with her own float at the Sydney Pride Parade.
Ultimately, I Am Skylar inspires everyone to live authentic lives. Skylar encourages us to accept everyone for who they truly are.
Little wonder that the film won Best Atlantic Short Documentary at the 2019 FIN AIFF Awards!
Alex Kronstein is the founder of Autistics United Nova Scotia, the local chapter of Autistics United Canada, a grassroots organization committed to raising the voices of Autistic people. He is also the host of the podcast The NeurodiveCast, and is a documentary filmmaker with several films currently in development.
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