Bang Gang (A Modern Love Story)
Directed by Eva Husson
Biarritz. 16 year-old George, the high-school hottie, falls in love with Alex. To get his attention, she initiates a group game with Alex, Nikita, Laetitia and Gabriel. They will discover, test, and push the limits of their sexuality.
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★★★★ review by Sal Alvarado on Letterboxd
An energetic, passionate, and non-judgemental study of a group of people whom we get to know only by exploring their physical interactions and facial expressions. Throughout there are constant moments where teenage indulgence is interrupted by an outside force - adult disapproval, societal expectations, or inevitable consequences (either physically or through editing) - which even plays into the film's overall structure. But these interruptions are never a subversion of the preceding events - they exist because that is the way life is, and while we should all be careful traversing it, we should also enjoy the fun, physical beauty of life anyway.
★★★½ review by Nonomoi on Letterboxd
It's like a french "Kids"of this 2000's generation but with a more optimistic message.
Anyway I can't avoid to feel thoughtful after watching this film just murmuring to myself: "Should I really have kids someday?! I know all the teen's risk behaviour but, but..we're never ready to deal with it someday, even more if it comes from someone that you love unconditionally..."...
Going forward: good acting, solid directing and enjoyable soundtrack.
★★★½ review by Brandon Hart on Letterboxd
Individual bodies rolling through joy, consequence, and emotional turbulence for 90+ minutes, enjoying any happiness they can find before inevitability sets in; this moved me, a lot.
★★★½ review by Jessica James on Letterboxd
Focusing on a group of French teenagers whose sexual experimentation gets out of hand, Eva Husson's Bang Gang is more substantial than its salacious material might suggest. Compared to the more problematic depictions of teenage sexuality in the work of, for example, Larry Clark, Bang Gang is as much concerned with desensitisation, technology, and friendship as it is with being explicit.
Much of the film's effectiveness comes from its mixing of dreamlike sequences, slickly edited to a score by songwriter White Sea, and moments of unadorned honesty. Bang Gang neither turns the teens' stories into a cautionary tale, or revels in its own style, but instead uses its subject to explore physical and emotional alienation.
★★★½ review by Dan Slevin on Letterboxd
“What seems at first to be an invitation to titillation – that title! – is actually a sensitive morality tale in which everyone is a victim (to some degree) in a situation that gets out of hand.
The female characters are well-drawn and distinctive. Husson cleverly chooses to introduce the slightly mousy, shy one (Daisy Broom) first before focusing most of the film on the more confident blonde (Marilyn Lima), who in a different film would have been the antagonist rather than the protagonist.”
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