EL TRANSEXUAL/THE TRANSSEXUAL

1977

Cast: Paul Naschy, Agata Lys, Vincente Parra, Eva Robin/Roberto Coati, Paco Espana/Bibi Andersen, Yeda Brown, Jose Nieto, Sandra Alberti, Ernesto Marin, Alfonso Castizo, Angela Reyno, Antonio Orengo, Pedro Romero, Manuel Pereiro 
Director: Jose Jara
Producer: Enrique Gonzalez Macho
Screenplay:
Juan Jose Porto, Jacinto Molina, Antonio Fos
Photography: Leopoldo Villasenor
Music: Carlos Montero
Production Company: Laro Films (Spain)
Running time: 88 min.

Eastmancolor

U.S. release title: No known US release

Video: No known US video release; bootlegs available

    

Review: This is certainly an interesting curio in the filmography of Paul Naschy, one which shows him to be a humanist who believes in the acceptance of people different from the norm. Naschy's interest in the subject began on a somewhat humorous note. While at the Gay Club, a popular nightclub in Madrid during the 1970s, Naschy went to the men's room to take a leak. As he was imagining a waterfall, a beautiful woman enters and goes to the urinal next to Naschy's...to reveal herself to be a "he"! Subsequently, Naschy found out more about the world of transvestites and transsexuals, and was compelled enough by the subject to write a story built around the lifestyles and tragedies of men who feel themselves to be women spiritually and emotionally, using as an underpinning the real-life case of a Madrid transvestite, Lorena Capelli, who died during an illegal sex change operation. The film contains many sequences and performances actually filmed at the legendary Gay Club, and has a documentary feel through the inclusion of an interview-type narration of a member of the transvestite/transsexual community, who explains the factual side of that lifestyle. An actor less secure or bold than Naschy would never have even touched such a subject, but Naschy has always felt sympathy for and kinship with all outsiders (perhaps as an outsider/maverick himself), and speaks of the film matter-of-factly and without apology. As if highlighting the outsider status of the subject matter and the entire enterprise, the film was banned for several years in Spain.  

Notes: The Italian transvestite Eva Robin/Roberto Coati appeared in the famous flashback sequence in Dario Argento's TENEBRE as the young woman who places the stiletto heel of her shoe into a boy's mouth. 


Cover of the Spanish Video release
TV Omega Video (1982)
(thanks to Alfonso Romero)