Director: Lea Mysius
Cast: Noe Anita, Laure Calamy, Juan Cano
Language: French with English subtitles
Country of Origin: France 2017 105 mins. (15)
Winner SACD Critics' Award 2017 Cannes Film Festival
Released by MUBI
A teenage girl explores her sexuality whilst battling with the onset of blindness in this bold and provocative coming-of-age story. On vacation with her mother and baby sister, strong-willed 13-year-old Ava discovers she has a degenerative condition that will result in the imminent loss of her eyesight. Her mother is determined to make the most of their family holiday, carrying on as if nothing is wrong. But Ava has other ideas. Right from its eye-popping opening moments on a crowded, sun-drenched Cote d’Azur beach, Léa Mysius’ hypnotic debut offers up some of this year’s most arresting images – its richly rendered colour palette often at odds with the thematic darkness of the story. Recalling the playful rebelliousness of early François Ozon or the confrontational sexual politics of Catherine Breillat, this drolly acerbic portrait of impudent adolescence is every bit as daring, unruly and unexpected as its young heroine deserves.
2017 BFI London Film Festival.