Jean-Luc Godard once said the phrase "British Cinema" was "a contradiction in terms". Well, he should be made to watch this captivating rites-of-passage drama...on a loop. Okay, so it took a Pole to direct one of the best homegrown flicks of 2004, but Pawel Pawlikowski's beautifully measured tale of an obsessive teenage friendship remains quintessentially English. The Last Resort director mines fresh insight from familiar characters, landscapes and class distinctions, yet infuses it visually with a rich European sensibility.
There's a deliciously subversive edge to the taboo relationship that develops over the course of a long, hot Yorkshire summer, as the provincial lass Mona (Nathalie Press) gets together with posh totty Tamsin (Emily Blunt). The true culture-clash, though, is between their youthful abandon and Mona's brother Phil (Paddy Considine), an ex-criminal turned born-again evangelist whose determination to banish `evil' from his valley is rocked by the saucy Sapphism happening right beneath his nose.
Stunningly shot, superbly acted and blessed with a raw and vibrant naturalism, it's a romance with a difference that comes steeped in mystery, danger and an almost tangible emotional intensity.