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Ginger & Rosa (In Theaters 3/22/13) – Review

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Ginger & Rosa (2013) 90 min

Directed by Sally Potter

Starring:

  • Elle Fanning as Ginger
  • Alice Englert as Rosa
  • Alessandro Nivola as Roland
  • Annette Bening as May Bella
  • Timothy Spall as Mark
  • Oliver Platt as Mark II
  • Christina Hendricks as Natalie, Ginger’s mother

Ginger & Rosa is a gripping drama set in Great Britain in 1962 and follows two 14 year old girls dealing with the troubles of a society on the brink of nuclear holocaust. The girls have been best friends since the day they born, literally. In the opening we see their mothers holding hands as they both go through the strides of labor. Ginger, played by the talented Elle Fanning, is really the main character of this movie. Ginger is obsessed with the possibility of the world ending as the result of a nuclear war, while Rosa, played by Alice Englert, is more concerned with boys. Needless to say, the two start to drift apart. While Ginger tries to change the world, Rosa makes increasingly bad decisions that alienate her from her best friend.

Elle Fanning as Ginger

Elle Fanning as Ginger

The Cast is rounded out well by the amazingly talented and incredibly beautiful Christina Hendricks (Mad Men), Timothy Spall (Harry Potter, Gothic, Sweeny Todd), and Annette Bening (American Beauty, Mars Attacks). I can honestly say, this has some of the best acting I’ve seen in a long time, not to mention the direction in this movie is enthralling. There are many awe inspiring shots that beg the question: why isn’t Director Sally Potter more renowned for her work?

I do have to say the movie starts out a little slow, and I do only mean a little. It quickly picks up and gets increasingly better as more drama unfolds. Without giving too much away, there are a few WTF moments. There isn’t any violence or blood, but there are things that are dark nonetheless. I found it very easy to relate to Ginger, even though I’m an American, and a man. I think everyone struggles to find themselves at that age and I don’t know anyone who hasn’t had multiple emotional struggles as a teenager. We all hated our parents (if not just for a day), we all dealt with hormones, we all grew apart from many of our friends and struggled with thinking about our futures. If anything, that is what this movie is about. How difficult growing up truly is.

Christina Hendricks as Ginger's Mom Natalie

Christina Hendricks as Ginger’s Mom Natalie

This movie is really very entertaining. I know I usually only write about horror movies, but I grew up watching IFC and the Sundance Channel almost as much as I watched Up All Night and Monstervision. I love me a good independent film, and this one is now up there with my favorites which include Mister Foe, Dream With the Fishes, and Spanking the Monkey.

Overall Rating: a solid 7.5 out of 10. I’m sure the rating will go up when I watch it again and find something new to enjoy.

It’s worth watching in theaters, and I will definitely buy it when it comes out on DVD.

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