Upon moving to a new neighbourhood, the 10-year-old, perfectly androgynous Laure (Héran) passes herself off as a boy to her new playmates. Sciamma uses this premise to explore adult themes such as gender identity, sexuality and intolerance through a child’s perspective with notable tact and insight. Equal credit goes to Héran’s mesmerising performance and to Sciamma’s script, which perfectly captures the innocence and insecurity of childhood, creating situations and dialogues that are as convincing as they are poignant. Understated, intelligent, moving – a small masterpiece of a film.
Tomboy | Directed by Céline Sciamma (France 2011) with Zoé Héran, Malonn Lévana. Starts May 3