Sandi DuBowski

1993 | 00:15:00 | United States | English | Color | Mono | 4:3 | 8mm video

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: Autobiography, Family, Holiday, LGBTQ

A series of intimate video-8 vignettes depicting the fierce love between Malverna and Sandi, 88 and 22, grandmother and grandson. The two playmates dress up drag-esque for this moving portrait of a woman’s lifetime struggle with gender and sexuality. Since Malverna's death, Tomboychik has become a living memorial to the intensity of her spirit.

"DuBowski's hilarious video, a witty and compelling exploration of the filmmaker's relationship with his eighty-eight year-old grandmother Malverna, not only references the vibrant and distinctively Jewish American culture that pervades the City of New York, but also the incredible changes that this culture undergoes from generation to generation to generation, person to person." —Robert F. Reid-Pharr, Fuse, Winter '93-94

"You can't get more low-budget than this, but you can't get much more emotionally powerful either. Here rare and intimate moments of pure love, regret, admiration, and naivety are shared between grandmother and grandson/filmmaker. Sometimes quite hilarious (grandma trying to figure out a video camera) and sometimes intensely touching, its loose, low-tech approach makes Tomboychik a remarkable personal document." —Melbourne International Film Festival (1994)

Pricing Information

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Prizes + Awards

Golden Gate Award for Best Short Documentary, San Francisco International Film Festival, 1994

2nd Prize, Chicago Gay and Lesbian Film Festival

Honorable Mention, Big Muddy Film Festival


San Francisco Int'l Lesbian and Gay Film Festival
San Francisco, CA

Exhibitions + Festivals


OutFest (LA, CA), 1999