A bold self-assured debut by a filmmaker whose career I’ll be following in the future. It nonetheless rests a bit too much on the virtuoso work of its cast, especially Alba Rohrwacher’s minimalist wonder of a performance. The swimming pool scene near the end is of surprising beauty, hypnotizing the audience with its perusal of the wonder that is the human body and its sensual physicality. Great exploration of gender.
Wikipedia: "The sworn virgin is believed to be the only formal, socially defined female-to-male cross-gender and cross-dressing role in Europe." I'd never heard of this Balkan tradition; I was amazed at how strongly the acceptance of gender-crossing contrasted with the strict enforcement of traditional gender roles. Bc of this it was all-or-nothing for Hana at first. Her gender fluidity made for a pretty cool story.