Carol Morley’s eagerly awaited follow up to her devastating Dreams of a Life is another beguiling insight into human behaviour; this time the agitated fever of teenage girlhood.
It’s set in 1969. Best friends Lydia (Maisie Williams of Game of Thrones fame) and Abbie (breathtaking newcomer Florence Pugh) have cultivated a world of two in the midst of the pent-up repressions of a buttoned up English girls school.
Lydia’s fixation on her friend is a welcome distraction from her frustratingly impenetrable mother (Maxine Peake) who suffers from agoraphobia and whose cool detachment leaves Lydia feeling rootless.
Her fragile world, with Abbie at its centre, starts to unravel when her white magic-obsessed brother and Abbie sleep together, and a tragedy and ensuing mysterious fainting epidemic overtake the school.
With cinematography from acclaimed cinematographer Agnès Godard (Beau Travail) and Everything But the Girl’s Tracey Thorn contributing angular melodies, syncopated to match the off-beat emotion; this is cinema to swoon over.