The Journey of Monalisa

The Journey of Monalisa

April 8, 12:00 AM – April 18, 11:59 PM



This is a virtual event. All shorts programs will be available between April 1-30, 2021 and all feature films will be available for ten days between April 8-18, 2021.

Directed by Nicole Costa 1h 33m Chile Spanish with English subtitles Documentary, Foreign

After 17 years, Nicole Costa gets in touch with Iván Ojeda, her old Chilean friend from college. Back then he was a talented theater director and playwright, but it turns out he has reinvented himself. Iván now goes by Monalisa and works as a prostitute on the streets of New York. Intrigued by this transformation, Costa decides to follow Iván Monalisa, a “gender-neutral two-spirit,” in their tough and vulnerable life filled with fleeting sexual encounters and addiction to hard drugs. Nonetheless, Monalisa does continue to write beautiful, raw pieces about life and survival in New York.

Recent scenes of Monalisa’s attempts to get a visa and her first successes as a writer are interspersed with old VHS footage, snippets of telephone conversations and extracts from her work. All this is framed by scenes of Monalisa proudly parading through the streets of New York—a living artwork searching in the shadows for the light of self-expression.

Directed by Nicole Costa, 2019, 93 min, Chile, Spanish with English subtitles, Two Spirit

Content Warning: Viewer discretion advised.