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She Monkeys Review

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Trying out for a new team, teenager equestrian rider Emma (Paradeiser) falls under the spell of self-assured Cassandra (Molin). Their relationship quickly becomes much more complex than Emma is prepared for...

★★★★★

Lisa Aschan's sometimes sluggish debut has already accrued a slew of awards on the international circuit. It’s an occasionally improvised, sometimes subversive coming-of-age drama focusing on Emma (Mathilda Paradeiser) and her precocious seven year-old sister, Sara (Isabella Lindquist, an exercise in light relief). Emma tries out for the voltige team at the local riding stables and strikes up a relationship with Cassandra (Linda Molin) who is both blonde and a bombshell. Which is where the narrative wheels fall off. What follows is a series of set-pieces — tentative, drunken kisses, a father tickling his daughter’s stomach, a girl destroying her horse figurine — that either feel disquieting or threatening, but fail to harry along this detached meditation on youthful longing.

A disjointed but refreshingly subversive character drama.

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