'T Blockers' Review: A Neon
T Blockers is the movie we need in times like these. It's a defiant scream and a middle finger to the patriarchy. It goes to places we wish most of the media it reminds us of had gone. The film lets its characters fight back instead of forcing them on this high road that I’m not a fan of. It's a spicy, fun, and neon-infused letter to those who understand existing in this current shitty era is a full-time job itself.
In the film, "When ancient parasites that thrive on hatred rise from beneath a small town, taking the most fearful and susceptible as hosts, a young trans filmmaker struggling to transition in increasingly hostile times for LGBTQ+ people, finds herself the only one who can sense the possessed, and rally the resistance before the horror escapes and spreads."
Sophie (played by Lauren Last) has a lot going on and is one of the most relatable leads. She's juggling a minimum wage job, her art, and also trying to figure out dating now that she's presenting. She's a lovable lead character. You will find yourself wanting to join these Thursday happy hours. Aside from her being so many of us, she also gets a few moments to just kind of lay out what an awful time it is to simply exist. Which is why I love that she and her squad do get to clean up so many bigots.
This movie has a lot of things to discuss. However, I’m here to bask in the queer rage. When Sophie's squad decides to take matters into their own hands and become well-dressed vigilantes, the movie hits the gas pedal hard. It becomes a neon-lit feminine battle cry at times. It almost defies genre in its quest to do what a lot of movies seem unwilling to do lately. T Blockers allows the oppressed to fight back instead of taking the high road. I’m not sure why films are preaching to those of us watching society come for us to turn the other cheek. It pisses me off constantly, and while this isn't my community, I love to see them fight back. They kick plenty of ass while looking cute to boot. More media should be making space for stories where communities being pushed to the breaking point do get to fight back.
T Blockers is its own movie, but for the sake of comparisons, it's got a very similar vibe to Anita Rocha da Silveira's Medusa. However, it also has an almost Pussycake rising when it comes to the goo and spew. I appreciate that the men who were the enemy looked as disgusting as we imagine internet trolls. I also loved the sick effects when they contaminate each other. However, I don't recommend watching this while eating.
Because the film has this cool throwback aesthetic, it took two viewings for me to decide some of the technical issues weren't just part of the world. There were a couple of sound issues that made some dialogue hard to catch. There were also a couple of moments where it was hard to see someone's face while something important was happening. However, I feel like these are more than likely things caused by budgetary restraints. After all, it's hard to get studio funding when you’re not a cis-white man. So, the rest of us have to turn our lemons into lemonade.
Writer-director Alice Maio Mackay is 18 years old, and this is her third movie. So, luckily we’re definitely getting in early on what's going to be a very cool career. This movie is punk rock. It's neon colors, glitter, resistance, and is clapping back at transphobia from the first frame to the last. It's the prettiest drink during your favorite happy hour that happens to be the strongest on the menu. T Blockers is a hit of catharsis wrapped in serotonin.
Did you catch T Blockers at Salem Horror Fest? Then we should gush over it at @misssharai.
It's a cool movie with a lot to say. It also gives us a few minutes of rage that makes it worth the watch.
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