Cert: 15 Runtime: 88 mins Director: Sean Baker Cast: Kitana Kiki Rodriguez, Mya Taylor and Karren Karagulian
Merry Christmas Eve, Bitch
Tangerine is a film that is know as the iPhone movie, but little did we all know it’s also a Christmas movie! Sean Baker had been studying the world of transgender prostitution for a while. Tangerine is a simple film but with some form of moral compass and now a new Christmas favourite for some people. So what is Tangerine about? On Christmas Eve Sin-Dee (Kitana Kiki Rodriguez), a trans sex worker fresh out of prison wreaks havoc when she finds out her pimp boyfriend has been cheating on her.Written & directed by Sean S. Baker, Tangerine is crafted with rigour & passion and shatters many filmmaking norms over the course of its runtime. Filmed entirely on iPhone with more enhancements coming from easily available apps, the film gleams with colour filters & warm palette that gives it a distinctive look.
And although the first act requires some getting used to, it only gets funnier as the plot progresses.On the surface Tangerine plays like a revenge film with ample wit to spare, whipping its hair around with an attitude that’s irreverent yet sensational. From the moment Kitana and Mya reconnect over a single donut bestrewn in colourful sprinkles to the moment we’re taken away with them into the grit and dazzle of Santa Monica Boulevard, Tangerine hits the ground sprinting.There’s a sub- plot focusing on the woes and infidelity of an Armenian cab driver, it seemed rather unnecessary. It seemed that the sub-plot was there to make it feature length. I don’t sympathize with the characters at all, but I see what Baker was going for. It’s impressive that it was filmed on a phone, but the rigging of the camera made it what it was. The joys of independent cinema.