“FREAK”— At the End of the Rope


At the End of the Rope

Amos Lassen

Unless “Freak” finds its way to an anthology DVD, many of us will not get a chance to see it and that is unfortunate. It is an 18 minute look at a transgender woman/drag queen who has reached the end of her rope. The film looks at an hour in the life of Randall O’Brien; a tormented drag queen who is rehearsing his lines for an acting role while he is dressed in full drag. As he tries to practice, he is constantly interrupted by phone calls—his mother, his agent, a collection agency, a temporary employment agency and he tries to ignore them all.

Aaron Merken is Randall/Sophia and is amazing as he plays the part of someone who has no touch with reality and is at the verge of breaking. Nothing works for him and those that he cares about are ready to let him go. He seems unable to react. This could be a very depressing film were it not for little touches of humor and the ending is much more uplifting than I thought it would be.

We are all aware of the difficulty of being an outcast and when Randall is Sophia he really knows what it is to be marginalized. The script he studies in the film is about how one feels when dressed in drag and while rehearsing he takes a step outside and see his neighbor Dale, a good looking, well-built guy who laughs  at Randall causing him to feel even more alienated. We feel for Randall because his story is ours—we are never fully accepted and yet we must live with that.

Eric Casaccio directed, produced and wrote this film and he shows us the pain we feel when we are rejected and this becomes a very welcome film. More, I will not say except to state that if you have a chance to see this film; do not hesitate for a moment.


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