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Sundance 2023: Mutt Review

Representation of transgender people in the media leaves a lot to be desired. A lot of the time they’re reduced to side characters, and their depiction isn’t always positive either. Although they are sadly far and few between when a film comes along like Mutt, which puts a trans person front and center, it’s incredibly refreshing and opens up the door for important conversations. It also offers an olive branch to help people better understand what it’s like living as a trans person. 

Feña is a transmasc identifying person living in New York City. Since coming out and transitioning he is estranged from most of his family and has also broken up with his boyfriend. Mutt follows a day in his life as he is put in the position to confront some of these frayed relationships. Bumping into his ex, his younger sister, and seeing his father who is coming to visit him.

Mutt’s day-in-the-life structure is well managed, each of the meetings is focused on for as long as they need to be, before moving to the next. Some of the meetings end up colliding and there’s a magnetism to these moments. Seeing a trans person live their life unapologetically in this way will be cathartic for so many people.

It’s not all nice though as Feña traverses his every day. He’s misgendered and deadnamed, and people ask him uncomfortable questions, all whilst dealing with a mother who openly detests him for being who he is and a father who’s struggling to accept it. This is the trans experience and it is a testament to writer/director Vuk Lungulov-Klotz that it’s painted on screen so authentically. 

Lio Mehiel, who is also trans, is on fire in Mutt. Their portrayal of Feña is one that could only have been achieved by someone who has more than likely experienced similar things themselves. MiMI Ryder is wonderful as Feña’s younger sister Zoe. When they reunite they embark on a mini C’mon C’mon style hang out. The history between them is clear but their instant chemistry is lovely. 


It’s no secret that more films and even tv shows need to be made in the same vein as Mutt. Trans people’s experiences need to be represented more on screen so that we can become a more accepting society. Mutt also proves that when these stories are told by the people the film represents then it will be all the more special.