Changing the Game

Michael Barnett, USA 2019, 95’
Polish premiere
5B I Am Human

Sarah, Andraya, and Mack, three transgender American teens in Michael Barnett’s film, are passionate about sports, which become the focal point of both their opportunities and barriers. Sarah and Andraya want to compete with women, while Mack wants to wrestle against men. The Texas Championship doesn’t come with the sweet taste of victory—his female opponents didn’t have a chance, and the wave of hatred he has to face would break many an ambitious athlete. The rules of the game differ from state to state and from university to university, just as the social perception of the protagonists in Barnett’s film also takes on many forms —from cruel hate to solidarity and support. Changing the Game is a socially engaged documentary whose impact stems from its dynamic production and its flawless rhetorical strategy: It’s hard to imagine more convincing spokespersons than Sarah, Andraya, and Mack, and we can root for them as they face their daily struggles, with the knowledge that what is really at stake is what their lives will be like.

Maciej Nowicki, Watch Docs


L.A. Outfest 2019 - Audience Award; Frameline San Francisco International LGBTQ FF 2019 - Audience Award

Michael Barnett

Michael Barnett is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker. His films include Superheroes (HBO Documentary Films) which won over a dozen festivals and multiple Emmy nominations;  Becoming Bulletproof (Showtime), winner of over 25 awards; and  The Mars Generation (Netflix Original/Sundance premiere), 2018 Best Science & Technology Documentary Emmy nominee.

Selected filmography

2002 Walkin' Free (short)

2008 Mother Earth (short)

2011 Superherosi / Superheros (doc.)

2014 Becoming Bulletproof (doc.)

2017 The Mars Generation (doc.)

2019 Reguły gry / Changing the Game (doc.)

Cast & Crew

director Michael Barnett
screenplay Michael Barnett, Amanda C. Griffin, Michael Mahaffie
cinematography Turner Jumonville, Michael Barnett
editing Michael Mahaffie, Amanda Griffin
music Tyler Strickland
producer Clare Tucker
production Superfilms!
sales The Film Collaborative
language English
coloration colour
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