View your saved tickets

DCA Archive

A Fantastic Woman

Sebastián Lelio

Chilean director Sebastian Lelio’s previous film Gloria was an unexpected hit at DCA, thanks in no small part to its warmth, honesty and empowering portrayal of a middle-aged woman at a crossroads. Bringing those same qualities to his Oscar nominated film A Fantastic Woman, Lelio this time tackles love, loss and self-belief.

Despite a significant age gap, Marina (Daniela Vega) and Orlando (Francisco Reyes) are deeply in love. After a birthday celebration where he surprises her with a promise of a trip to Iguazu Falls, they head back to the apartment they share together. When Orlando wakes in the middle of the night feeling unwell, they rush to the hospital and Marina’s world is shattered. As a transgender woman, she finds that her relationship is called into question by all those around her. Marina is shunned by Orlando’s estranged family and questioned by the authorities, evicted from her home, and her grief ignored. She is supported by work colleagues and her family to a degree, but eventually it is inner strength which she must draw on to find closure and move on with her life.

Never shying away from the challenges Marina faces as a transgender woman, this is also a portrait of grief, plain and simple. But with a blistering performance by Vega at its centre, it is clear by the end that the film’s title is utterly, beautifully true.