The camaraderie of the undesired: Invisible to everyone else, pinched, late-blooming Marie (Pauline Acquart) pairs with Anne (Louise Blachère), a heavy girl with a pasty food-court complexion. Cruelly cloddish on dry land, Anne provides their only link to the larger social world through her synchronized-swimming extracurriculars. Complications come at poolside, where the two-girl clique meets Floriane (Adele Haenel), a swimmer whos come through puberty with all the right proportions and whose beauty entrances Marie. Flo wont give it up to her appropriately hot partner, François, after whom Anne ineptly pinesand so a trickle-down chain of exploit-the-weaker is set in motion. The p.o.v. is fixed: Neither object of desire is seen outside of Maries and Annes lives; adult authority is alluded to but never present (the effect is more Massacre at Central High than Peanuts). Completing the convergence of rare young talents is the director, 27-year-old Frenchwoman Céline Sciamma. Her feature debut doesnt quite have the stun of discoverymortified adolescent sexuality is something of a national specialty, after allthough she inexhaustibly endeavors after the indelible image.
July 11-17, 2008