This French coming-of-age film feels honest and real
Directed by Céline Sciamma (2011’s drama Tomboy), set in a tough neighbourhood outside Paris and subtitled from French, Girlhood tells the story of Marieme (Karidja Touré), a shy teen who must navigate various coming-of-age problems (romance, family) alongside darker issues (drugs, turf wars) as she finds her place in the world. At its heart, though, Girlhood is about friendship; the scenes between Marieme and best friends Lady, Fily and Adiatou – sleeping four to a bed, swigging from a communal bottle – are heartwarming. Underplayed and free of Hollywood sheen, their relationships feel honest and real. Though occasionally prone to cliché, Girlhood resonates enough to succeed.