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#InsideOut21 Review: See You Then

June 1, 2021

By John Corrado

★★★ (out of 4)

The 2021 Inside Out Film Festival is running virtually from May 27th to June 6th, all films are available to stream for audiences across Ontario

Over a decade after their breakup in college, Kris (Pooya Mohseni) and Naomi (Lynn Chen) decide to meet up for dinner, the first time they are seeing each other since Kris’ transition. This is the premise behind director Mari Walker’s mostly engaging, minimalist drama See You Then, which centres almost entirely around a conversation between these two women over the course of one night.

The screenplay, which was written by Walker and Kristen Uno, plays out through a series of extended dialogue scenes as Naomi and Kris catch up on each other’s lives. Naomi is now married with kids, while Kris, who has always wanted kids, talks about the challenges of trying to get back into the dating scene as a transgender woman. This paves the way for several deeper discussions about identity, privilege, relationships, motherhood, and being a woman in society.

But, as the two reminisce about their college days, it becomes apparent that they didn’t exactly end on good terms, leading to the brunt of the script’s dramatic conflict. The film does feel a bit slight in scope, at times coming across more like a stage play, and it can also feel stretched to feature length, even at 75 minutes. But it’s an important film in terms of trans representation that, at its best, opens an honest and thought-provoking conversation about gender identity as well as personal hopes and desires.

Mohseni and Chen do a fine job of carrying the film. While their line deliveries start off sounding a bit stilted, which may have been an intentional choice, they get more natural as it goes along and are able to develop a believable rapport together. Their conversations build upon each other to reveal more layers of what each character is going through, culminating in a tense and powerfully performed climactic scene between the two. This is part of an emotional gut-punch that See You Then delivers in its last act, with a heartbreaking revelation that brings deeper meaning to the story and closes the film on a moving note.

Pooya Mohseni and Lynn Chen in See You Then

See You Then premieres on June 1st at 8:00 PM, and will be available to stream until June 6th at 11:59 PM. Tickets and more information can be found right here.

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