Mimesis Documentary Festival — MANSCAPING

A gay painter in Pittsburgh, Devan Shimoyama (above), talks about the travails of finding a barber capable of cutting his Black hair. “We don’t cut hair with texture,” a stylist tells him. This leads Shimoyama to begin frequenting Black barbershops, but a problem still persists: These spaces are largely homophobic and hyper-masculine.

Jessie Anderson

In Vancouver, a trans-man, Jessie Anderson, cuts hair at a non-gendered price. He also uses a sliding pay scale to assist his clientele living on the margins—trans-persons are often poor, he explains—and sells clothing and items at a discount price to help those transitioning.

Richard Savvy

In Sidney, Australia, the Naked Barber, Richard Savvy, mixes kink, pornography, and grooming to give clients cuts of their liking, with any additional services they may want.

Safe spaces may not abound in the world, but they do in Manscaping. Directed by Broderick Fox, the doc follows these three protagonists, watching them at work while interviewing them in the traditional manner. The movie follows a straight path, though the three zig and zag a little, making sure they aren’t kept in a box while being 100% honest with themselves and others. It’s heartwarming. It’s also enlightening. The world is not an easy place to traverse for so many. Thankfully, these three are doing what they can to make it a little bit better. Playing the Mimesis Documentary Festival on Aug. 6 as part of the Resurfaced doc block.