Writer-director Andrea Arnold’s worthwhile latter-day “kitchen sink” character study zeroes in on Mia (played by non-actor Katie Jarvis), a fifteen-year-old would-be dancer looking for love where there is none – amid the inhabitants of a crummy housing project in London’s bleak eastern suburbs. She’s the proverbial rose on a manure pile, the odd girl out, the un-Precious, and young Ms. Jarvis, a real-life high-school dropout, wrings the role for all it’s worth. Filmmaker Arnold, a former British TV star, leads her no-name cast from what might have been a festival of self-loathing to rarer turf, using the power of personality. Also starring Kierston Wareing as Mia’s sluttish mom and Michael Fassbender as mom’s lusty boyfriend (123 min.).
Director: Andrea Arnold
Producer: Kees Kasander, Christine Langan, David Thompson and Paul Trijbits
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Katie Jarvis, Kierston Wareing, Harry Treadaway, Charlotte Collins, Jason Maza, Chelsea Chase, Jack Gordon, Sarah Counsell, Brooke Hobby and Rebecca Griffiths