“The most important thing in life,” Miss G tells her students at an elite British boarding school in 1934, “is desire.” She needn’t have spelled it out. As played by the spectacularly cool Eva Green, Miss G is the walking embodiment of desire. She smokes, flouts the headmistress’s rules and hints at dark European adventures in her past. She even wears trousers. Determined to awaken in her girls a yearning for something more, Miss G encourages free thinking, late-night parties and the almost erotic freedom of diving lessons at the lake.
The girls are thrilled at first to have such an inspiring teacher, but cracks begin to appear. Miss G begins to disturb the students’ rigid and remorseless power structure. Top mean girl Di Radfield (Juno Temple) feels especially threatened, and Di does not respond well to threats. Then a new girl arrives from Spain. Even compared to Miss G, Fiamma (Maria Valverde) is exotic. Beautiful, dark and supremely sophisticated, she is a princess among mere pretenders. Everyone begins to compete for her favour.
Cracks marks the feature debut of Jordan Scott, and it’s clear she already possesses a command of the camera and her performers. Casual observers might note that, as the daughter of Sir Ridley Scott, she grew up breathing cinema. Perhaps so, but what stands out here goes beyond craft. As Miss G tries to navigate the girls’ shifting lines of allegiance, Scott builds contrasting moods of unease and sensuality from the very first scene. She also shows enormous confidence in letting that mood play out until she is ready to unleash its consequences. When Cracks opens up at its climax to the full cost of Miss G’s pronouncements on desire, the result is nothing short of shocking. —TIFF
Jordan Scott (born 1978) is a British photographer, filmmaker and actress. She is the daughter of director Ridley Scott and advertising executive Sandy Watson. She is the niece of director Tony Scott and half-sister of directors Luke and Jake Scott.
Scott directed the feature film Cracks, an adaptation of a novel by Sheila Kohler. Other feature films directed by her include All the Invisible Children (Segment Jonathan), Portrait, and Never Never. She has also directed commercials for Prada, Nike, Amazon.com and Land Rover. —Wikipedia
I did so want to like this – the tantalising premise intrigued me at the very least. But, as hard as I tried, I couldn’t engage with the characters who ranged from stiff and aloof to petulant and annoying… read review