When Alex and Greg Wheeler must think about what the future holds for their four-year old son Jake. He has always been more interested in fairy tale’s and dressing as a Princess. The preschool director suggests that the gender issues might not actually be a phase.
This puts a huge strain on the marriage between Alex and Greg as they cannot really agree what is best for Jake. They end up turning on one another and blaming the other for the lack of compassion and not helping Jake in different or better ways. When they are told that this might not be a phase they apply to different private schools to try to get him a better education after preschool.
That is something I am not fully aware of in terms of the way American school systems work compared to in the UK. I think it is similar to nursery and then primary school, but I think the ages might be a little bit different by a year or two.
This film is very current in terms of the subject matter and addressing the issues of transgender in children. If they think they are in the wrong body, if it is just a phase. This film targets a 4-year-old child and I think that is where it becomes rather difficult. We don’t get to see Jake very often on-screen and that makes it more just talking about him and what he is going through. With a couple of moments when Greg talks about a bath moment and something Jake did.
I think I find it difficult to try to get my head around the transgender thing, especially with a 4-year-old child. Is that too young for them to fully understand? That is something I think makes this film a little bit difficult really, as if it was an older child like in the film Just Charlie I think that makes a little bit more sense. Surely young children like to play with all types of toys?
So while the story is a little bit weak I think performances from Claire Danes and Jim Parsons were very impressive with Octavia Spencer in the Supporting role. Totally different type of role for Parsons which is something I really enjoyed, I know we all have typecast him as being Sheldon Cooper. So it was nice to see him taking on this film. Danes was equally as impressive through plenty of different emotions.
It really could have been a groundbreaking film in terms of the storyline, but that was not something it managed to do as it skirted around the issue instead of attacking it more head on and being a much better film!