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Watch Now in Full: Doc 'Angel' About Transsexual Prostitute in France

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by Vanessa Martinez
June 27, 2013 11:15 AM
4 Comments
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Angel Doc

Do you remember this documentary when we first profiled it back in 2011? Angel, directed by Sebastiano d'Ayala Valva and produced by Laurent Segal, won several awards when it toured the film festival circuit back in 2011 and 2012.

Now, Angel, about a transsexual boxer living Paris and making a living as prostitute to help his family back in Ecuador, has been released in its entirety, via youtube, all 62 minutes of it.

To recap, the synopsis reads:

"In Paris everyone knows him as "Mujeron" (Big Woman) but his real name is Angel. A former boxer from Ecuador, Angel is now a transsexual prostitute in France. His mission in life is to support his family back home. Now, after five years away, the time has come for him to see what his help has achieved. In his first trip home since he left Ecuador, Angel is confronted with the harsh reality of ...his country and an ambiguous relationship with his family. 'Angel' is a compelling insight into the complexities of identity and economic struggle in Ecuador. But, above all, it is the touching story of a remarkable individual and his fight for justice and acceptance."

I'm only a few minutes in, and it's shaping out to be quite a fascinating watch.


Watch below:

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4 Comments

  • Lady M | July 9, 2013 12:30 AMReply

    Powerful, is the first word that comes to mind. This piece allows the viewer to look past the surface and truly engulf oneself in humanity. In the beginning, when "Angel" spoke of family, I was moved. It's everything. Sacrifice, Selflessness and Humility rolled into this beautiful person. Arriving home and greeted with such love, I felt joy, but it quickly dissipated when family members equated "Angel's" life" as their savior. To see that level of sadness when it's realized that the ideas "Angel" had for family and self were not supported, was heart-breaking. Lack of accountability on so many fronts and it's happening everywhere. The help was a hindrance, in this case. Not wanting your family to suffer has created another form of suffering. I will add, "Angel's" resolve within self, was overwhelmingly beautiful. To walk down the roads/streets of Ecuador and face adversity with strength and determination was amazing to watch. My heart goes out to "Angel" and family members. Thank You

  • Andre Seewood | June 27, 2013 8:13 PMReply

    The documentary ANGEL (2010) by Sebastiano d'Ayala Valva is absolutely devastating in its emotional challenge to the audience. While it draws attention to the unremitting poverty in the country of Ecuador it also simultaneously draws attention to the social utility of homosexual/transgender identity as an economic go-between that supports an impoverished family in Ecuador by the "work" of a relative in France. The "Angel" of the title exists as an almost quasi-religious figure; a man who has transfigured his sexual identity and sells sexual favors in another country to support his family in his homeland. A former boxer, Angel, is still using his body to support his family- albeit not in physical combat with other men, but instead in sexual contact with other men which puts him in conflict with traditional masculine identity and global monetary politics. He has continued his struggle through alternate means for the same "sacred" reason: to support his mother and siblings back home. As much as one might be repelled by Angel's trans-gender identity and his sexual labor, the immorality of extreme poverty in the third world is countered by the immorality of prostitution in the first world. Rather than making a plea for some kind of moral relativism, the film allows us to see the blind spots - the hidden hell- that exists between our endless polemical arguments about homosexuality/heterosexuality- poor/wealthy- Christian/Islam- Citizen/immigrant. It is quite interesting how the family in Ecuador justifies their acceptance of Angel when he returns to visit them. They are often comparing his existence as a "faggot" to the other awful possibilities of being a thief or a drug addict. Such comparisons reveal that their tolerance of Angel is predicated upon his sexual labor, his mission to provide for them while sacrificing a real life for himself. Above all it is Angel's mission in this life that touches you as a viewer, for in his mission to provide for his family by any means neccessary we should be able to see our own failures as a global society caught in an interminable struggle between rich and poor that ultimately blinds us from the hidden hells that so many of us have to suffer. It is a documentary that if it cannot make you wish for more angels on this earth, it certainly makes you realize the importance of the ones who do exist among us even if many of us refuse to see them.

  • Lvflg | June 27, 2013 7:32 PMReply

    Measured and poetic. Thank-you for sharing

  • Holland Hippie | June 27, 2013 3:00 PMReply

    I cried when I saw his face after seeing the house. What a brilliant film. It shows all the complexities in a very respectful way.

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