Thursday, June 20, 2013


Concussion, dir. Stacie Passon, 2013, USA, 93 min. 
Thursday 6/20, 7:00pm @ Castro; IMDb

ConcussionThe story in Concussion is well removed from the usual clichés of softball teams and U-Haul second dates and bad poetry in smoky café open mics that are the backdrop for so many lesbian films. We begin with a successful lesbian couple, living in the suburbs of New York City with their two kids, where they live a mostly routine life. Then Abby gets hit on the head by a baseball, giving her a concussion that then seems to ripple through her life, shaking the pillars of her bourgeois stability. Bored and frustrated by her wife’s lack of interest in sex, Abby pays for sex with another woman, and then repeats the experience, eventually signing on part-time with the service and turning tricks herself. Her stable, suburban married life and her secret double life as a prostitute eventually collide, of course.

The strong points in the film include the portrayal of Abby as something more than just a thrill-seeker or self-destructive wastrel, and her exploration of both sides of sex work is treated with balance, neither sugar-coated nor demonized. The sex scenes are steamy enough to be enjoyable even for gay men, but the characters are also complicated and interesting outside the bedroom. The cast is superb, the direction and cinematography were top-notch The biggest weak point was that the initial trigger incident for this radical shift in lifestyle didn’t feel convincing: I just didn’t buy the notion that getting hit on the head with a baseball rocked Abby’s life to such an extent. All in all, though, Concussion is a Must-See for lesbians and Highly Recommended for all audiences.


  1. I haven't seen you at the Festival yet this year! I enjoyed the three shorts programs I've attended so far (Kiss Me Softly, Fun in Boys Shorts, and Fun in Girls Shorts), all three seemed stronger than the usual crop.


    1. I was there, attended a total of 38 screenings this year. FIBS in particular was outstanding this year, with 8 exceptional shorts. My reviews will be trickling out onto the blog over the next few days, backdated to the screening dates.