Review: A Powerful Look at Connection for Black Trans Women in 'Walk For Me'
We all go through moments of transition. These moments are those significant periods in our lives when the core of our beings break free, and our inner self is truly revealed. Once we take those brave steps into the light, there is no going back, or turning away. We must stand bare under the glaring lamp of the general public to be poked, prodded, and whispered about. Perhaps no other group knows these moments of revelation quite like those of the LGBTQ community. From being shoved aside in their cultures, to being thrown away by their own families, moments of revelation can be brutal and crippling. Those who identify as transgender women of color in particular often face a terrible plight. In the past decade alone, over four hundred trans women have been murdered, and their lives and deaths have been overlooked as if they had never existed at all. In his short film “Walk For Me,” director Elegance Bratton highlights one of the most pivotal moments in a young trans person’s life. Struggling with her identity, Hannah (played by Aaliyah King) retreats into herself, away from her mother, Andrea (played by Yolanda Ross) who is both desperate to connect with her while simultaneously fearful and ashamed of her daughter’s identity. Andrea’s fear and lack of understanding causes her to lash out violently against her child. She also insists on calling Hannah by her birth name Hassan, which continues to erode their already strained relationship.
There have been many films about the LGBTQ experience in the 21st century. Damon Cardasis’ recent coming of age musical drama “Saturday Church,” focuses on a young teenager, who similar to Hannah is trying to define himself, In the face of a hostile familial environment, he desperately grapples with his identity and sexuality. “Walk For Me” stands out, however, because it hones in on one specific moment for Hannah. It is the exact instant that will either lead to final rejection or acceptance from her mother.
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