Movie Review: 'Ginger and Rosa' -- 3 stars
Ginger and Rosa
Directed by Sally Potter
Starring Elle Fanning, Alice Englert, Christina Hendricks
Elle Fanning is just 14 years old, but if her performance in the coming-of-age story "Ginger and Rosa" is any indication, Dakota's younger sister might just be our next great actress.
Writer-director Sally Potter keeps her camera trained close to Fanning's face throughout much of the film, which chronicles a powerful test facing the lifelong friendship of teens Ginger (Fanning) and Rosa (Alice Englert) in London circa 1962.
Ginger is proud and introspective, the quiet observer as her parents' marriage falls apart, boy-crazy Rosa betrays her and the news broadcasts a promise of nuclear destruction. It's a terrifying moment for any young woman.
Potter avoids clichés to present a subtle vision of this traumatic period for her protagonist. Her movie is spare and claustrophobic, observing as Ginger finds herself increasingly trapped by the people around her, and ably paralleling the microcosmic events of the plot with the larger nuclear-age feelings of unease.
Mostly, she gets out of the way and lets Fanning do her work. She's a star.