Gun Hill Road (film)
|Gun Hill Road|
|Directed by||Rashaad Ernesto Green|
|Produced by||Ron Simons|
Michelle-Anne M. Small
|Written by||Rashaad Ernesto Green|
Isiah Whitlock, Jr.
|Music by||Enrique Feldman|
|Edited by||Sara Corrigan|
|Distributed by||Motion Film Group|
Gun Hill Road is a 2011 drama film directed by Rashaad Ernesto Green and starring Esai Morales. The title of the film derives from the Bronx road of the same name. The film is notable for starring a transgender character (Michael) who is played by a real transgender person, Harmony Santana, who was the first openly transgender actress to be nominated for an Independent Spirit Award.
Ex-con Enrique (Esai Morales) returns home after a stint in prison. His wife Angela has had an affair while he was away, and his child Vanessa, who is a young trans woman in the process of transitioning and coming out, is exploring life, leaving Enrique with decisions to make regarding his family's future.
- Esai Morales as Enrique
- Judy Reyes as Angela
- Harmony Santana as Michael/Vanessa
- Isiah Whitlock, Jr. as Thompson
- Míriam Colón as Gloria
- Felix Solis as Pete
- Franky G as Tico
- Vincent Laresca as Hector
- Robert Prescott as Mr. Donovan
- Robin de Jesús as Robin
The film has received mixed reviews. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 63% based on 30 reviews, and an average rating of 6.1/10. The critical consensus reads: "Equal parts absorbing and educational, Gun Hill Road wears its heart on its sleeve through tender performances that make up for its narrative familiarity". On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 55 out of 100, based on 14 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
Kirk Honeycutt of The Hollywood Reporter said in his review: "In his feature debut, Gun Hill Road, writer-director Rashaad Ernesto Green displays compassion for his characters and an ability to create strong scenes to underscore his thematic concerns. But the story itself is too shopworn especially at Sundance where countless films have presented dysfunctional families where parents and offspring are at odds". Dennis Harvey of Variety similarly said; "script and direction tend to telegraph all events, draining the competently packaged pic of tension, nuance and surprise".
The subject matter of the movie was noted "for the casualness with which it puts a Hispanic transsexual in a black male's bed" because this kind of relationship is rarely seen in movies.
Awards and nominations
- Independent Spirit Awards
- 2012, Best Supporting Actress: Harmony Santana (Nominee)
- "Op-ed: 14 Reasons That Made 2011 Great for Trans People". The Advocate, December 28, 2011.
- "Gun Hill Road (2011)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved March 20, 2018.
- "Gun Hill Road Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved March 20, 2018.
- Morris, Wesley (16 September 2011). "'Gun Hill Road' movie review". The Boston Globe. ISSN 0743-1791. Retrieved 8 November 2011.