THE WOMAN INSIDE handles its risque theme--sex-change operations--with impressive maturity. Prime among its merits is the final film appearance of Blondell, playing an aunt baffled by the transsexual impulses of her nephew, a wounded war veteran. Unfortunately, the film's efforts to make
Manon's motivations clear too often takes the self-defeating form of saccharine treatment. Compared with Rainer Werner Fassbinder's IN A YEAR OF THIRTEEN MOONS (released in the US a year earlier), a subtly tragicomic look at a transsexual character trying to maintain self-respect, THE WOMAN INSIDE
lacks both compassion and humane understanding of its characters. Independently made ...