Movieline's Hollywood Life - 11/01/2005
"Huffman finds the dignity in this emerging woman, and Zegers is remarkably natural....The film builds to some touching moments between father/mother and son."
Entertainment Weekly - 12/09/2005
"For artistry and degree of technical difficulty, this judge awards Felicity Huffman a 10 for her performance in TRANSAMERICA." -- Grade: B-
Rolling Stone - 12/15/2005 3 stars out of 5 -- "[T]he movie's soul is Huffman....She turns this small, resonant film into a cry from the heart."
New York Times - 12/02/2005
"That the film succeeds without slipping too far into sentimentality or didacticism is in no small measure the result of Ms. Huffman's wit and grace."
Uncut - 04/01/2006 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his exploration of family ties and the tensions that threaten them has a caustic honesty and an unexpectedly universal resonance."
Sight and Sound - 04/01/2006
"TRANSAMERICA affectionately delivers some familiar standards while twisting them with a new metrosexual spin."
Widescreen Review - 06/01/2006
"TRANSAMERICA features Felicity Huffman in an astonishing, believable, and Golden Globe-winning role."
Total Film - 08/01/2006 4 stars out of 5 -- "Handsomely shot, subtly scripted and evocatively scored with bluegrass, folk and country and western..."
Ultimate DVD - 08/01/2006 5 stars out of 5-- "[Huffman's] chameleon-like transfiguration is incredible, creating comedy and pathos in equal measure."
Felicity Huffman leaves the glamor of DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES behind and makes a surprising diversion with this offbeat film. Playing an uptight male-to-female transsexual named Sabrina "Bree" Osbourne (née Stanley), Huffman gives a remarkable performance. Readying herself for the final snip that will make her womanly transformation complete, Bree's life takes a sudden turn when she receives a phone call from New York. Her son, Toby (Kevin Zegers), has been jailed, and Bree needs to post bail for him. The only problem is, Bree didn't know she had a son, but her therapist refuses to give her written permission to have the final part of her sex-change operation if she doesn't go, so Bree heads east from her California home. Thinking Bree is a Christian missionary, gay hustler Toby informs her of his intention to become a porn star on the west coast, which brings out plenty of motherly instincts in the worried cross-gender father. So the two take a road trip back west, with Bree unable to tell Toby the truths about who she is and what she once was.
Writer/director Duncan Tucker gets the balance between comedy and drama just right as he gently squeezes Bree's various revelations to Toby onto the screen. But it's Huffman who really shines, with her vocal inflections, makeup, and acting skills perfectly combining to give a convincing performance as the ultraconservative Bree. Tucker doesn't focus too much on Bree's gender-hopping, instead crafting an emotional portrait of a highly dysfunctional family, while constantly dragging his audience back from the brink by weaving a killer laugh-out-loud line into the plot. A fine supporting cast--in particular Fionnula Flanagan (THE OTHERS) as Bree's hilariously overbearing mother--helps to deflect from the film's low-budget origins, with pithy dialogue and energetic performances combining to make TRANSAMERICA a wonderfully satisfying treat.
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