LES MEILLEURES (BESTIES)
MARION DESSEIGNE-RAVEL | FRANCE | 2021 | 97 MIN | FRENCH S.-T.EN.
In this Juliet & Juliet tale of instant chemistry, a vibrant, close-knit community in the Parisian district of Goutte d’Or comes apart at the seams when two women from vying friend groups defy their besties to explore their affections.
Nedjma (Lina El Arabi) has cultivated a detached, “pissy” attitude. Though, it’s no match for the thawing effect of Zina (Esther Rollande), a new neighbour who, with just one look, can transform a hip hop beat into a soaring classical score. Zina can see beyond the “nasty” to the “gentle” in her. The catch is that both have rival besties, and a series of retaliations turns Nedjma into a pariah and supresses their spark. Writer-director Marion Desseigne-Ravel’s imbues her debut feature with a volatile physicality that renders intimacies even more tender. In tune with the intrusive nature of constant communication, she blasts the frame with colourful texts and splits the screen with video calls but harnesses the stillness of the nighttime cityscape when Zina and Nedjma come together in the open air. Nedjma experiencing a freedom she so desperately wants in her everyday life and preparing to push past the dissonance.
screening at Cinéma J.A. de Sève only | NOVEMBER 26TH 7PM