Lola (Mya Bollaers) is a teenager with long pink hair, whom we meet in the introductory shots while she is still in the rush hour while skating the streets. But some shots later we realize that Lola is actually 18-year-old Lionel, obviously a transgender young man hoping for sex surgery. Unfortunately, his / her mother, who was supposed to finance the operation, has just died, and she has not seen Phillippe Lola / Lionel’s father for two years. Ever since he kicked her out of the house when he realized that his only son was in fact – a daughter. In the meantime, Lola has settled in a shelter, and although I can’t see each other, both Lola and Dad will set off together for the Belgian coast to scatter their mother’s ashes on the sea. That is why the film is called “Lola vers la mer” or “Lola towards the sea”, and it turned out that the film made by the French-speaking Belgian filmmaker Laurent Micheli proved to be an average road-movie.
It is not really a classic road movie in which travel is key, but that journey is important because a father and his (a) son who has meanwhile turned into a daughter will start building a relationship. Although at first it seems impossible because each of them has their own version of events, which is why they broke up and does not think to deviate from it even a millimeter. While Lola was deeply affected by her father’s rejection and expulsion from home, Philippe was broken by the disappearance of a son he dreamed of having an ideal of a son he never had, and Lionel / Lola was never forgiven for not being the son he wanted. While Lola is rebellious and furious that her father rejected her and that he never wanted or could support her choice, Philippe feels as if his life has been missed.
I had a son, not a daughter, try to figure out what I was going through, Philippe will repeatedly repeat Lola in this complex film that managed to break into clichés about a daddy villain who would beat like an ox in the cabbage of his gay son. A son who has meanwhile turned into a daughter. Both Lola and Philippe have their flaws here and are aware that they both made mistakes and that they were just a little more careful and reasonable that their lives could both be much different and better. Thus, this journey to the sea will serve for both of them as a certain opportunity for redemption and for reconnecting and forgiving each other. He had this film and seven nominations in the selection for the Belgian film of the year, and in the end they were only confirmed by Mya Bollaers for the promising actress and the production design team.