In the Yorkshire countryside, working-class tomboy Mona meets the exotic, pampered Tamsin. Over the summer season, the two young women discover they have much to teach one another, and much to explore together.
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A tale of obsession and deception, and the struggle for love and faith in a world where both seem impossible. The film charts the emotional and physical hothouse effects that bloom one summer for two young women: Mona, behind a spiky exterior, hides an untapped intelligence and a yearning for something beyond the emptiness of her daily life; Tamsin is well-educated, spoiled and cynical. Complete opposites, each is wary of the other's differences when they first meet, but this coolness soon melts into mutual fascination, amusement and attraction. Adding volatility is Mona's older brother Phil, who has renounced his criminal past for religious fervor - which he tries to impose upon his sister. Mona, however, is experiencing her own rapture. "We must never be parted," Tamsin intones to Mona but can Mona completely trust her? Written by
In the book unlike the film, Mona and Phil have a sister named Lindy whom is getting married for the 2nd time. The story takes place on 23 May 1984. Mona is self-conscious of her appearance and works as a barmaid at the pub where the family lives, plays on the fruit machines and drinks alcohol to help her cope with the day. Tamsin has returned home from boarding school and seems to be lonely and Mona asked by Tamsin's father Mr. Fakenham to befriend her and Mona is off to school and decides to visit the Fakenham house only to find Tamsin's parents are arguing and due to the fact that Mr. Fakenham is having pitiful affairs. See more »
I just felt so useless. She was my one sister, my beautiful sister and she started to turn into this monster. These bones on her body just started to jut out like someone had stuck daggers under her skin. And her hair, she started growing hair all over her body - it was like a sort of dense fur, like a werewolf. And she stopped smiling, she couldn't smile anymore because she was throwing up all the time and the vomit, acid made her teeth go all yellow and she just stopped smiling and stopped ...
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I translated this film for the Budapest GLBT cultural festival. So I expected something that would show lesbian love in a positive light. Instead, this was a rather depressing feature about a teenage friendship which turned into a love affair "by chance". Someone comparing it to Heavenly Creatures had a point. Lesbianism is presented here as an escape from the sordid reality of the girls' (especially Mona's) life.
Not that we see much of these lives, though. This was my major problem with the film. It was based on a novel which was clearly autobiographical, and some points got lost on the way. What part did the zealot brother play in the story? And Tamsin's parents? What was the point in the religious procession, and why was it important to include? Where are Mona's parents? A lot of questions that aren't answered. The two actresses are really superb, but they seem to exist in a void, without an even slightly realistic environment. Maybe this is how the author felt at the time of this happening, but it doesn't make a film. At least not a good one.
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