[Martins Zemlickis/Unsplash]

Ginger & Rosa

00:00 April 18, 2013
By: Fritz Esker
Ginger-and-rosa
[Courtesy of A24]

*1/2 out of ****


There's a fine line between naturalism and watching-paint-dry dullness.A filmmaker like Mike Leigh can make the mundane daily struggles of ordinary people seem like compelling drama.But in the wrong hands, this tactic can grow boring.Director Sally Potter's film Ginger & Rosa crosses the line into tedium.


The title characters are two adolescent friends (played by Elle Fanning and Alice Englert) in early 60s London.The threat of nuclear war hangs in the air, Ginger's parents (Allesandro Nivola and Mad Men's Christina Hendricks) have a strained relationship, and....that's about it until a late plot contrivance that feels like a discarded subplot from a soap opera.Despite a barely 90 minute running time, the pacing is so glacial that it makes Tree of Life look like Speed.


There is something to be said for intimate, methodically paced, character-centered dramas, but when the characters are this uninteresting, the result isn't any more enlightening than a Transformers sequel.

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