As many of you TransGriot readers knew, the film Hello Forever with my homegirl Isis King was debuting last night at the ongoing WorldFest Film Festival here in H-town that started April 4 and runs until April 13.
Hello Forever is up for five awards during this festival, and there was no way I was missing it, since Isis was in town for it along with her castmate Rebecca Khoo, director Peter Kirk, writer Noelene Turton and other members of the Hello Forever team. I'd also been aware of it since Isis traveled to the Philippines in 2011 to shoot it.
Masumay Booc and Jennifer Blair-Bianco round out the lead actresses in this film..
But you knew there was going to be Moni drama before we even get to the story about the movie.
I went to the AMC 30, the host theater for WorldFest which is on the other side of town from moi and a 1.5 hour bus ride to pick up my ticket for tonight's 9 PM screening. I needed to change clothes and check on my grandmother, so I headed back to the house to make sure she was okay. After changing clothes, I bounced at 7 PM hoping to get to the theater by 8:30 PM.
That unexpectedly got derailed when my initial bus while picking up peeps at UH gets stopped by an Asian woman asking a long list of questions to the driver about METRO routes and service to the UH campus that delays us just long enough to where I missed my connecting METRORail train and bus downtown. I compound it by not taking the 81 Westheimer (because it only goes down Westheimer to Hillcroft and then turns toward Sharpstown) when it pulled up where I was waiting for it across the street from the Main Street Square station thinking that the faster 53 Briar Forest was coming that would hit the freeway and turn on Westheimer just past the Galleria and make up some of the time I lost.
Meanwhile as the ticking clock moving inexorably toward the movie start time revealed how much of an error that assumption was, I didn't get on the next westbound 82 Westheimer until 8:25 PM. I arrive at the corner of Westheimer and Dunvale after a long anxiety filled ride through downtown, Montrose, Upper Kirby, River Oaks, Highland Village, the Galleria area, two construction zones and points west of the Galleria until 9 PM. I still had to walk another ten minutes after crossing Westheimer across the massive parking lots of a Walmart and a Garden Ridge Pottery just to get to the AMC 30.
Needless to say by the time I finally entered the theater at 9:15 PM the movie had started and I was pissed off because I was late, but put it on pause long enough to remember why I was there..
Hello Forever is set in Manila and tackles the subjects of poverty, corruption, single motherhood, human trafficking and sexual exploitation by following four women affected by it.
To get through a world with odds stacked against them, they form sisterhood bonds to collectively get through their personal and group situations..
Isis plays Rommy, a transpinay with an American GI father who finds herself on the mean streets of Manila trying to make the money for SRS.
I won't say any more than that because I don't want to spoil the movie before y'all get a chance to see it, but I will say it was worth the 1.5 hour ride to see it. I loved it because of the sisterhood despite the trying circumstances theme. It didn't Pretty Woman sugarcoat how mean the world that sex workers inhabit can be, and I hope more film festivals get to see this independent film as the year continues.
I also got a chance when the movie was over to spend some quality time with Isis and the crew to discuss a long list of subjects before I had to take myself home and go back into blogger mode.
And yes, when I find out how the awards broke down, I'll let y'all know.