Expired January 30, 2023 6:55 AM
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Seventeen-year-old Jem Starling struggles to define her place within her fundamentalist Christian community in rural Kentucky. Even her greatest joy — the church dance group — is tempered by worry that her love of dance is actually sinful, and she’s caught between a burgeoning awareness of her own sexuality and an instinctive resistance to her mom’s insistence that the time has come to begin courting. She finds respite from her confusion in the encouragement of her youth pastor Owen, who is likewise drawn to the blossoming Jem’s attention.

Writer-director Laurel Parmet delicately balances the intoxication and inappropriateness of the pair’s transgressive connection in this morally complex, sensitive coming-of-age story. A stellar Eliza Scanlen beautifully conveys the impetuous, conflicted Jem’s tentative journey toward understanding her growingly complicated ideas about herself, her family, and the faith that has always guided her life. The Starling Girl centers on Jem’s agency as Scanlen and a gruffly charismatic Lewis Pullman generate a palpable chemistry, even as the film steadily reaffirms Jem’s youthful naïveté and Owen’s position of authority.

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  • Year
  • Runtime
    116 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    United States
  • Director
    Laurel Parmet
  • Screenwriter
    Laurel Parmet
  • Producer
    Kevin Rowe,Kara Durrett
  • Executive Producer
    Will Greenfield ,Jessamine Burgum ,Douglas Choi ,Martina Bassenger ,Chris Stolte ,Heidi Stolte ,William Reedy ,Emily Reedy
  • Co-Producer
    Ben Shafer
  • Cast
    Eliza Scanlen ,Lewis Pullman ,Jimmi Simpson,Wrenn Schmidt ,Austin Abrams,Jessamine Burgum
  • Editor
    Sam Levy
  • Production Design
    Mollie Wartelle
  • Composer
    Ben Schneider