Roy (Tom Wilkinson) has a problem. Similar to Rob Halford from Judas Priest, Roy has hidden his secret identity from everyone around in for his entire life…something like 50 years. You see, Roy, a factory worker in Illinois, believes that he’s actually a woman trapped in a man’s body and it’s not until during a counseling with his wife of 25 years that he explains to the pastor that he’s all woman and he plans on going ahead with a sex change operation.
Needless to say his wife Irma (Jessica Lange) is shocked and she kicks his ass out of the house where he’s left alone to further embrace the female within and bring her more to the surface. This leads to plenty of shit being dumped on Roy by his factory workmates who disapprove of him wearing perfume and earrings to the job.
Finally, releasing that she loves her husband for better and for worse…even if he has no dick and wears a dress. So she lets him come back home and thus begins the struggle to keep the family together, no matter how weird things are getting, because in preparation for his operation, Roy – turning into Ruth – has begun taking hormones that have given him little boobies about the size of his daughter’s.
The film begins off with a strong sense of humor and keeps the subject matter fairly light as Roy drops this bombshell on his family and the community, but things get more emotional as we realize that this is something Roy has been struggling with his entire life and that it pains him greatly. Things also get a little intense as Irma does her best to keep her sanity while her husband prances around in women’s clothing. But still, even through the tougher times, the film is sprinkled with a bit of humor right up to the charming end when we realize that this is a movie about the strangest things some of us will do for love.