Woman on Fire
Directed by Julie Sokolow
Brooke Guinan, a Long Island-born, third generation FDNY firefighter who happens to be transgender, is front and center in this fascinating and inspiring portrait of a woman working in a profession filled with unsung heroes, who became a hero for having the courage to be herself. Brooke, accompanied by telling home footage, honestly recalls her years of trying to feel comfortable in her own skin in spite of the all too familiar years of bullying and lack of support from family. Both Brooke’s mother and father are forthright in on-camera interviews as they recall their initial resistance to their daughter’s transition. In spite of many setbacks in both her professional and personal life, Brooke presses on, becoming an inspiration to the new community which immediately embraces her. Julie Sokolow’s portrayal of the effervescent Guinan is a superlative example of life affirmation; a heartfelt portrait of change. WOMAN ON FIRE investigates the interwoven dynamics of two families—the Guinans and the FDNY. At its heart, Brooke’s battle for self-determination and acceptance by both is as memorable as she is.