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Transgender people in Japan have long found a haven of sorts in the entertainment world, be it as a dancer in a nightclub or an emcee on a network variety show. As we see in Eiji Uchida’s tumultuous drama “Midnight Swan,” though, that supposed haven can be fragile indeed.

Despite some progress in social acceptance of the LGBTQ community, compared with generations past, a transgender woman like the film’s protagonist, played by one-time mega-idol Tsuyoshi Kusanagi, still faces the kind of prejudice that leaves her marginalized — or outcast — starting with her own family.

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