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Set right after World War II, a naive teenage girl joins a shabby theatre troupe in Liverpool. During a winter production of Peter Pan, the play quickly turns into a dark metaphor for youth as she becomes drawn into a web of sexual politics and intrigue. Written by
Alan Rickman was reportedly upset to find out that Georgina Cates had lied about her age (she was in her early 20's but stated she was only, indeed, 16) in order to land the role of Stella. He had gone out of his way to be extremely gentle around her during their intimate scenes because of her perceived age. See more »
Stella's coat as her uncle leaves the bathroom. See more »
I've been curious about this movie for a long time. I finally saw it on IFC.
It was great! In this age of VERY expensive, predictable, committee-approved "art", I was relieved to watch this story unfold. Although I suspected early on about the relationship between Cates and Rickman's characters, it's execution was much better than the usual pap that pretends to be a surprise or twist.
Or even interesting.
The real twists in this story, was its own mirror of the real human forces and decisions that keep some of the sweetest, and unfortunately, worst stories going on. The twists were the tiny reasons why such things, sometimes painful and abhorrent to our collective cultural sense of what's right and decent in a society, to continue within it.
The hypocrisy of denying that these dark parts of ourselves exist often cause them to continue. Often times, the self-appointed moral-police of our culture make this inevitable in their pursuit of human frailty, the aftermath of its hunt, and the white-washing of the events (and non-events) they discovered.
No character represented total evil, good, decadence or purity, including Stella. She had as much (subtle) emotional weaponry with her, as she had emotional scars.
Many Americans don't like, or have been trained (over time) to not have patience for such imperfect main-characters in fiction anymore. The one-dimensional, mass-marketed character, is the norm here now.
That's sad. Because of that, this movie (and others like it) didn't do very well here.
Having this story take place within the entertainment industry is an excellent way of displaying so much of the world's human tragedy AND stupidity being covered up by some people's treachery, some people's nobility, or a combination of both.
And even at the end of this tale, all of the stage crew, like life itself, executed their own particular versions of the adage, "The show must go on."
No perfect hollywood story here, with it's base and stupid doling out of come-uppance of everyone's flaws...or Evil.
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