Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Director: John Cameron Mitchell
Year Released: 2001
Rating: 2.0

Bowie-esque punk rocker Hedwig (Mitchell) plays with her band in some tiny locations (including several diners) to small crowds as she relays to the audiences her story through song: growing up in East Berlin (without a father), marrying a soldier, having her gender reassignment surgery botched, having the soldier leave her ... and then falling in love with young musician Tommy (Michael Pitt), who steals her songs and becomes famous (without giving Hedwig credit).  Make no mistake, this is a thinly-plotted ego-trip for Mitchell, who is front-and-center of every scene - occasionally there's a nice, homemade animated section to change things up a smidge - and though most of the songs wouldn't sound out of place on an 80's rock station, a few really stand out (like "Angry Inch" and "Sugar Daddy").  Having missed seeing this when it was released close to twenty years ago, I can say now (in 2020) it really was ahead of its time, making a transgender character not a villain, but someone who just wants to be 'whole' (which is either tacky or sweet, depending on your perspective).