TIFF 2023: Our Review of ‘Fitting In’

Posted in TIFF 2023 by - September 10, 2023
TIFF 2023: Our Review of ‘Fitting In’

Fitting In is the newest film by Canadian director Molly McGlynn. This fresh, fabulous update on the teenage sex comedy tells the story of Lindy, an adolescent girl navigating Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser syndrome (MRKH syndrome), a congenital condition that impacts one in 4,500 females. In Lindy’s case, the diagnosis means she has a vagina that is much shallower than average and no uterus. Played by the charming Maddie Zeigler, our heroine slowly learns to accept her body. As she does, Fitting In interrogates issues gender and sexuality.

Excited to have sex with her boyfriend for the first time, Lindy visits her doctor to explore birth control options. The exam reveals her MRKH, and the youth realizes vaginal intercourse may not even be possible without vaginoplasty. Lindy asks herself, “How do you even grieve something you never had in the first place”? In a society that often reduces sex to penetration, not having a vagina makes the teen feel inadequate.

Fitting In is a deeply personal film for McGlynn, who also wrote the script. The filmmaker was herself diagnosed with MRKH as a teen. Powered by McGlynn’s thoughtful meditation on a condition with which she lives, Fitting In explores serious questions about what defines a woman;  however, it is at its heart a comedy with heart. There’s plenty of  humour as Lindy bungles her first attempts at selfies or when she teases her mom (Emily Hampshire) about her buttoned-up Tinder profile. Most importantly, Fitting In illustrates womanhood is about more than a vagina!

This post was written by
Sarah Sahagian is a feminist writer based in Toronto. Her byline has appeared in such publications as The Washington Post, Refinery29, Elle Canada, Flare, The Toronto Star, and The National Post. She is also the co-founder of The ProfessionElle Society. Sarah holds a master’s degree in Gender Studies from The London School of Economics. You can find her on Twitter, where she posts about parenting, politics, and The Bachelor.
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