2011-2020AdventureDramaPilar PalomeroSpain

Pilar Palomero – Las niñas AKA Schoolgirls (2020)

Celia, an 11-year-old girl, studies at a convent school and lives her mum, a 30-year-old widow. The arrival of a new classmate hurls Claudia into adolescence.

11 wins & 40 nominations.
San Sebastián International Film Festival 2020 Winner – Dunia Ayaso Award

Schoolgirls shares much with Summer 1993 apart from being set just one year earlier. As in the earlier film, scenes that feel like carefully reconstructed screenwriter memories play out with a quasi-documentary spontaneity and freshness; the scenes featuring children only (they were apparently given no script) are easily the most memorable, with one in particular moving credibly from joy to disaster in just a couple of entirely compelling minutes. The performances from these young actors are terrific when taken separately, but what works best is the dynamic between them, and some of the looks that these dark-eyed girls exchange are so rich that they are little movies in themselves.

As with 1993, the social background is also key. The script is sharp to pick up on the fact that in the playground, for example, these girls are singing rollicking sailor songs that reflect none of their own experience while reinforcing sexist values. “How do we know that God exists?” asks Celia, and her mother replies, “Just because,” while the repressive approach to sex at school contrasts with the liberal attitudes in the teen mags the girls start to read. In 1992, Spain was still far from shedding the Francoist legacy, and the country’s struggle for the souls of these youngsters at times feels tantamount to child abuse. – Jonathan Holland /Hollywood Reporter

2.41GB | 1h 40m | 992×720 | mkv


Subtitles:English here

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