GAZE 2020: Lingua Franca

Director: Isabel Sandoval

95 mins, USA, 2019, Digital

To pre-order Lingua Franca, click here. The film will be available to view from Thursday, October 1st at 18.30.



Olivia, a Filipina trans woman in New York (played by director Isabel Sandoval), struggles to make ends meet. She works as a carer to Olga, an elderly Russian woman, while brokering a deal with her sketchy boyfriend to get a Green Card. When Olga’s grandson, the handsome but boozy Alex, shows up, things get more complicated and attractions begin to stir. The situation is hard as it is: will Alex’s macho attitude make things worse?

Beautifully atmospheric and commandingly shot, Sandoval broke new ground by becoming the first trans woman to present a film at the Venice Film Festival. Lingua Franca brings a distinct authenticity to this narrative tale, and introduces extraordinary everyday characters on the fringes of society, navigating contemporary America in whatever ways they can.

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