The latest from the ever-enterprising Sally Potter takes us to the London of her adolescence in this striking coming-of-age drama, which considers what it was like to grow up in 1962 with the world seemingly in danger of imminent nuclear annihilation.
Flame-haired teenager Ginger (Elle Fanning) feels everything too deeply for her own good, whether it’s the future of the planet, or the prospects for her parents’ troubled marriage, whereas her best friend Rosa (Alice Englert) trusts in God and is more interested in finding love . . . of the earthly kind.
Clearly, these girls are on a collision course, and the film’s both an exploration of the passionate engagement of youth, and a recognition that an anti-authoritarian spirit in the public sphere doesn’t always make life easy at home. Alessandro Nivola excels as Ginger’s philandering self-justifying lefty dad, but the movie belongs to the remarkable Ms. Fanning, at 13 already an actress of considerable screen presence and captured exquisitely by ace Irish cameraman Robbie Ryan. (Notes by Trevor Johnson.)