Starring: Mathilda Paradeiser, Linda Molin, Isabella Lindquist
Director: Lisa Aschan
She Monkeys marks the feature film directorial debut for filmmaker Lisa Aschan as she leaves the world of TV and shorts behind for the big screen.
Aschan revealed that she was heavily influenced by the Western genre in the movie and wanted to make every scene feel like a battle and a dual between these two competitive teens.
Emma (Mathilda Paradeiser) is a girl who likes to be in control. When she tries out for the local voltige (equestrian vaulting) team she meets Cassandra (Linda Molin), a strong, attractive and vivacious girl.
As they get to know each other they share a sense of wicked fun and quickly become best friends.
But feelings of jealousy, competiveness and sexual attraction have them pushing each other to their limits. As Emma spends more time away from home with Cassandra, little sister Sara (Isabella Lindquist) begins to discover her own sexual identity, all the while pining for affection from a reluctant babysitter.
She Monkeys looks as the relationships between teenagers as well as these young girls battling their own thought and feeling as they go through adolescence, hard to believe that the three lead actresses are new to acting.
They all deliver very touching performances as character we can all relate to as they struggle to find out who they are and where their place in the world is.
Mathilda Paradeiser's performance is particularly good as she juggles being a run of the mill teenager while being a stand in mother for her younger sister.
She Monkeys is not your run of the mill coming of age movie it's much darker and more of a character driven movie.
But it is incredibly disjointed and it's not as gripping a movie as it could have been. There is almost an inevitability to where the competition between the two girls would end - which is a shame.
However director Lisa Aschan has delivered an assured and complex movie that only shows off her promise as a director.
While this movie has done incredibly well on the festival circuit I feel that it will struggle to appeal to a mainstream movie watching audience.
She Monkeys is out now
FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw