Picking out a bouquet is a universal symbol of love. Whether it’s Richard Gere handing Julia Roberts roses at the end of “Pretty Woman” or in “The Notebook” when Allie wakes up to flowers on her pillow, each petal is an emblem of affection.
But, with the same love story told over and over again, these gestures of adoration can become tiresome and may not accurately showcase all the other relationships in the world. There is indeed a glimmer of hope with Amazon Prime’s recent release of “Anything’s Possible.”
The film, which debuted on Amazon Prime on July 22, is a coming-of-age story that follows Kelsa (Eva Reign), a confident high school girl who is transgender. When her classmate Khal (Abubakr Ali) develops a crush on Kelsa, he gathers the courage to ask her out, even though he knows it could cause drama. The film follows the young love formed between the two along with the challenges of falling for someone while also dealing with the obstacles of truly being yourself.
Not only is the film a perfect romantic comedy for the Gen-Z generation, with constant use of ‘slay’ and ‘woke’ in the vocabulary, but it also is a film that exhibits a relatable relationship that differs from a classic Ken and Barbie troupe. While it checks the boxes of sweetness shown in every romantic comedy, it also does not stray away from the harsh reality of finding love as a transgender person.
The character of Kelsa, the narrator in the film, evokes the audience to question something cis-gender people never have to experience: “What would you rather: the existential despair of not being known or the existential despair of being known and being rejected?” Not only is Kelsa dealing with the struggles any 17-year-old faces, like applying to college and dating, but she also faces constant anxiety about whether people want to befriend her or be acquaintances simply because she is transgender.
Portraying this accurate lens which is welcoming to the LGBTQ community would not have been possible without Billy Porter, the director of the film. Porter, known for his performance in “Pose,” noticed that while the series was empowering for Black, Brown, queer and transgender people, it was a look into the past — specifically the 1980s and ’90s. Thus, Porter made his directorial debut with this film, telling POPSUGAR “Being behind the camera, there’s an urgency in the sense of – I am at the helm of creating a space for the communities that have not been seen.”
The film’s use of technology also increases the uniqueness and its connection to the Gen-Z world. With Kelsa making YouTube videos documenting her time as a transgender high school student and her dreams of studying zoology, the computer gets a different angle of each character. Similarly, Khal uses the internet page Reddit for dating advice and as an anonymous community. Ironically, screenwriter Ximena García Lecuona received inspiration by seeing a Reddit post of a guy asking whether or not he should ask a trans girl out.
Even though their relationship began with being partners in art class and a couple of flirtatious DMs on Instagram, the chemistry between Kelsa and Khal is the tour de force of this film. Of course, they are placed on adorable dates in Pittsburg such as the Andy Warhol Museum and the Botanical Gardens, but it’s their connection that keeps the viewer glued to the screen. With their witty banter, teenage awkwardness and thoughtful advice given on both sides, Kelsa and Khal are a real couple with real-life dilemmas — with the bonus of being swoon-worthy.
If you know me, then you wouldn’t be surprised that I enjoyed this film – with my favorite film being “When Harry Met Sally” and my veins flowing with a love for romantic comedies. But, I was surprised by how much I was truly fond of the film. I thought the Euphoria-styled costume design and the possible use of language like ‘boujee’ or ‘bop’ would make me cringe at any movie geared toward a Gen-Z audience. But, it was quite the opposite. The film embraces the current culture of 2022 but only uses that as a background to the love between Kelsa and Khal. Who knew a Gen-Z movie could strike a chord with anyone — no matter the generation? Well, anything’s possible.
“Anything’s Possible” is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.