Slamdance 2022: “Straighten Up and Fly Right”

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Disability of any kind is not an obstacle towards success nor can stop one from progressing forward. It is always one’s mindset that dictates the body what to do; like a well-written formula that during execution can be flawless. Sadly, that does not always work for many.

Written and directed by the lead cast Kristen Abate and Steven Tanenbaum, “Straighten Up and Fly Right” follows New Yorker, Kristen, who suffers a severe form of Arthritis, Ankylosing Spondylitis and is hunched over, permanently. Unable to straighten up her spine, the woman, with all the pain she experiences, gets up every day to live her life as a dog walker. But things go south when she Is evicted by her landlord.

Despite her desperate situation, the woman continues working. Therefore, she eagerly responds to her boss in his request to walk another dog, during which she meets Steven, who has similar health issues. The two begin their friendship, in which the two are not afraid to question their fears, challenge each other and open up new opportunities towards revelation. Through the beautiful performances, the film demonstrates the importance of life from every angle and why it’s worth living, no matter how hard it may look.

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