Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Boys Don't Cry (1999)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Boys Don't Cry (1999)

In Kimberly Peirce's shocking debut film - an Academy Award-winning film - a psychological docudrama based on a true story about a 20 year-old small-town Nebraska boy trapped in a girl's body:

  • the portrayal of real-life 20-year old small-town Nebraska, female-born Teena Brandon (Oscar-winning Hilary Swank), who masqueraded as a boy (named Brandon Teena) when trapped in a girl's body while suffering a "sexual identity crisis" and awaiting a sex-change operation
  • the sequence of her cross-dressing routine involved taping down her breasts with gauze, stuffing her crotch with a wadded-up white sock, and wearing a cowboy hat
  • Teena's heartbreaking covert lesbian relationship with teenaged, white-trash factory worker, aspiring singer and blonde love interest Lana Tisdel (Chloe Sevigny) after confessing his/her true sexual identity, including their lesbian kising, sex in a car, and their prolonged, controversial, outdoor lesbian oral sex scene
Teena's Lesbian Relationship with Lana
  • the revelatory disrobing scene of Brandon/Teena when his/her pants were pulled down by jealous ex-convict John Lotter (Peter Sarsgaard) to reveal that 'he' was biologically female, before she was raped from behind over a car - the film's most disturbing scene
  • the shocking murder of Brandon/Teena in the film's conclusion when shot at point-blank range in the chin by John Lotter; after Brandon/Teena slumped to the floor, John stabbed her lifeless body before fleeing. Her helpless girlfriend Lana screamed and watched in horror, and then laid next to the corpse
Teena Shot and Stabbed to Death
  • in the final scene, the voice-over reading of Brandon's/Teena's letter to Lana, as she drove away from town - the letter mentioned their future together: ("Dear Lana, By the time you read this, I'll be back home in Lincoln. I'm scared of what's ahead, but when I think of you, I know I'll be able to go on. You were right. Memphis isn't far at all. I'll be making a trip out on the highway before too long. I'll be waiting for ya. Love always and forever, Brandon")

Cross Dressing Routine

Teena - Abused and Raped

Teena's Letter to Lana
(Heard in Voice-Over)


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