Ovarian Psycos

Joanna Sokolowski and Kate Trumbull-LaValle’s rousing documentary Ovarian Psycos is about women of color in East Los Angeles who work for social justice via, among other things, organized bike rides. Their rides are not unlike San Francisco’s own monthly Critical Mass — one of the bigger ones was called Clitoral Mass — but since no men are allowed, it’s also about 100 percent less douchey. Founder Xela De La X describes the trans-inclusive group as a refuge for runaways and throwaways, along with at-risk women of all ages, youth or otherwise. As we see, much of the work they do is in dismantling stereotypes, such as a tone-deaf Los Angeles Times article failing at cleverness by calling them a “chain gang” — the Psycos are primarily Chicano, so they’re a gang, geddit? — or new member Evie’s mother, who disapproves since “bikes are more of a boy thing.” And as we see, the boys have mixed feelings about it, such as the white male bike shop owner who grumbles about being excluded in a way that only someone who’s never experienced true exclusion can, while anonymous cowards say horrible things about them online. Ovarian Psycos is both a portrait of sisters doing it for themselves, and another example of how bitchy men can get when they’re not included in everything.

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