Although Genesis is the cross-dresser, Lady Jaye expresses the stereotypical feeling associated with cross-dressing: being trapped in the wrong body. To overcome this feeling, she and Genesis turn their bodies into art. Instead of having children--which Genesis describes as a couple's way of becoming one person--they decide to become one person in a new way. They have plastic surgeries to look more alike--including breast implants they get on Valentine's Day. They are human cut-ups.
Like its gender-bending subjects, the film bends the definition of documentary, blending reality and imagination until they become one beautiful new creation.
Both Genesis and Losier will be on hand at 9:30 p.m. on March 23, when The Ballad of Genesis and Lady Jaye screens at the Michigan Theater as part of the Ann Arbor Film Festival. Like a lot of the other films at the March 23-27 festival, it challenges us in ways that may be uncomfortable at first. But ultimately, it expands our notions of what we thought was possible in art. And in life.
[Originally published in March, 2011.]