Billie: Is this an authentic life?
If being in high school with divorced parents isn’t tough enough as it is, Billie (Tilda Cobham-Hervey) has just been told by her mom (Del Herbert-Jane) that she is going to be transitioning to a male identity, and that she is being sent to live with her father (Beau Travis Williams). The two have decided that they will continue to see one another during this emotionally and physically challenging period every Tuesday for the entire year, no matter what. 52 TUESDAYS was actually filmed over the course of a year, on every tuesday, which provides an interesting approach to filmmaking, despite it’s gimmicky approach.
A few separate stories begin to unfold in the film as the year moves on. Billie is going through the teenage woes of discovering herself and her sexuality and surrounding herself with promiscuous friends who seem to be completely on board with the “friends with benefits” mentality. The second and less focused on story would be the one of James’ transition from female to male. We see the medical and emotional process which he is going through, however the film never really seems to delve too deep into this aspect, and focuses mainly on Billie, her relationship with her friends, her parents and her eccentric uncle who her mom also lives with.
Some Tuesdays are more interesting than others, leaving some Tuesdays feeling like mere filler in a story that is lacking a certain depth until the last 15 minutes of the film, when the actors really begin to shine and the story begins to elicit genuine emotions from the audience. There are interesting points about gender identity, family dynamics, and teenage apathy but it all seems much too surface level for the majority of the film.