Three 15-year-old girls living in the ultra-modern Paris suburb of Cergy-Pontoise find the dynamics of their relationships gradually beginning to shift in first-time filmmaker Céline Sciamma’s intimate look into the world of synchronized swimming. Floriane (Adele Haenel) is a beautiful blonde with a perfect body and remarkable talent in the pool. Marie (Pauline Acquart) is something of a tomboy taken to water, and Anne (Louise Blachere) is an overweight-but-outgoing swimmer whose crush on a male swimmer (who only has eyes for the physically flawless Floriane) is about to forever change the way these three disparate souls relate to one another.
Céline Sciamma (1980) is a French screenwriter and film director. She studied French literature at first, then completed courses in screenwriting at the Paris film school La Femis. She deals with both film and TV productions. Her debut film was Water Lilies (Naissance des pieuvres, 2007), which was successful at many international festivals. She also shot the short film Pauline (2010) and the feature-length film Tomboy (2011). She has also written several screenplays. —Zlin Film Festival
Swapping genuine emotion for surface level coming-of-age-sensuality, Water Lilies took almost 3/4 of it's duration to get moving and then revealed exactly what we already knew. Yes it's about painful lessons learned in youth but we never really get inside any of the characters heads. The absence of any parents and a clunky visual metaphor for friendship at the end only added insult to injury. 2.5 stars
Whether you’re secure or not, ‘Water Lilies’ is kind of a dangerous movie to watch. It’s about curiosity and discovery among a group of high school teenagers (both gay & straight) and at times… read review
It’s a very surprising and very provocative tale of young girl’s explorations into sexuality at the dawn of adolescence. The protagonist is a bit of a social outcast who has an equally awkward best… read review