Girlhood (2015) - Rotten Tomatoes: "must see" films!
An intelligent and heart-swelling story with an excellent cast.
The week of May 22’s best new streaming titles / The Dissolve:
"There’s a scene in Girlhood that’s stuck with me.
All four members of the movie’s eponymous girl gang (what Bande Des Filles, the movie’s original French title, more accurately translates to in English) have rented a hotel room together for the night, determined to escape their “real” lives, which include abusive families, violent brawls with other teen gangs, and boy troubles.
One by one, they prance in front of each other wearing dresses they’ve just “bought”—replete with tags and security devices—complimenting and lovingly mocking one another.
Once each is satisfied with her look, they don’t go to a party or a club.
Instead, they turn on Rihanna’s “Diamonds,” and begin passionately lip syncing and dancing joyously with each other.
Director Celine Sciamma bathes them in warm blue light and doesn't cut away until the song ends and the girls have hugged, giggled, and collapsed in a heap on the bed.
It’s one of the only moments of pure happiness that Sciamma allows her 16-year-old main character, Marieme (fantastic newcomer Karidja Toure); things get much bleaker for her from here on out.
And the scene is a perfect example of how Sciamma doesn’t minimize or overplay the experience of growing up, of becoming yourself—topics that, in many a director’s hands, feel patronizing or overwrought.
Instead, she fills her film with authentic and surprising moments like this, scenes that, taken as a whole, paint a convincing and painful picture of what it’s like to come of age female, black, and determined to flourish in a world that’s just as determined to make sure you don’t."
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