‘Adam’ Review: Cis Teen Learns a Lesson About Trans Acceptance in Sweetly Progressive Comedy

In “Adam,” a teenager pretends to be trans, and his journey provides a bittersweet gateway to the young man’s sexual awakening. Naturally that arc leads to a whole lot of questions, some of which the movie controls better than others. Some have argued that the very premise of “Adam” yields troubling transphobic implications, going so far as to launch a boycott of the movie well in advance of its release, and those allegations deserve serious attention. But the abject dismissal of the movie on the basis of its premise alone negates the actual mechanics of a narrative that hovers inside a cis male gaze, and charts a path toward its redemption.

“Adam” certainly stimulates a complex dialogue about the biases of its anti-hero and his twisted act of deception. But the thorny representational issue surrounding “Adam” belie its sweet, amiable tone, and there’s much to be appreciated about
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