Tales of the Waria

Tales of the Waria
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Tales of the Waria

Indonesia, la più popolosa nazione musulmana al mondo. Sebbene apparentemente tollerata dall’opinione pubblica, la comunità locale dei transgender, qui chiamati “waria”, in realtà vive ai margini della società. Tales of Waria ci racconta le storie di Tiara, Mami Ria, Suharni e Firman, i quali hanno rifiutato di cambiare sesso in adesione ai precetti islamici, e della loro lotta, spesso tragica, per affermare la loro condizione e poter assecondare il loro desiderio di amare. Partendo dalle vicende dei quattro waria protagonisti, esplorando la complessità delle loro vite, muovendosi tra locali notturni e saloni di bellezza, la regista americana Kathy Huang affronta tematiche spesso ignorate, o comunque poco conosciute, dai filmmaker occidentali. In particolare vengono presi in esame il rapporto tra religione musulmana e transgender, la situazione socio-culturale di un paese quale l’Indonesia, la piaga dell’AIDS, oltre che la vita e le lotte di chi ha scelto di non essere né uomo né donna. (TGFF)

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trailer: Tales of the Waria

Varie

While many in the Western world view Islam as socially repressive, in Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim country, exists a community of biological men who live openly as women– the warias. As four warias strive to find romance, intimacy, and acceptance, they encounter unique obstacles that force them to make extraordinary sacrifices to keep the ones they love.

NOTE DI REGIA:

When I first read an article about the waria in 2005, I was amazed to learn that a transgender community could exist so visibly in the world’s largest Muslim country. Unable to shake my curiosity, I took several Indonesian language courses and traveled to Indonesia in the summer of 2008 to experience the lives of the waria firsthand. I discovered a world full of contradictions, tragedy, and heroism—one that I knew had to be shared with larger audiences.
I invited the waria to join me in creating a documentary on their most favorite topic of conversation: love. They were thoroughly enthusiastic. Waria elders gladly agreed to serve as advisors throughout the project. Gaya Celebes, a local health organization staffed by waria and gay members, generously lent translators and story consultants. Several of their members also became part of the film crew.
The crew hard at work
Together, we are venturing forth on a project that promises to be an unprecedented glimpse into a little known but truly remarkable community—a community that not only challenges our assumptions about gender, masculinity, and Islam, but also reveals our endless capacity as human beings to find, despite great hardship and disappointment, happiness and meaning in our lives.

Kathy Huang

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