""A sensitive, heartrending portrait of what it feels like to grow up different, Sciamma’s beautifully observed coming-of-age tale aches tenderly with the tangled confusion of childhood. When 10-year-old Laure’s family moves to a new neighborhood during the summer, the gender-nonconforming preteen (played by the impressively naturalistic Zoé Héran) takes the opportunity to present as Mickäel to the neighborhood kids—testing the waters of a new identity that neither friends nor family quite understand. Sciamma’s warmly empathetic tone is perfectly complemented by the soft-lit impressionism of Fournier’s glowing cinematography." - "The Female Gaze" (2018)"
Girlhood (France, 2014)
Film description: "Girlhood - which was called "Bande De Filles" in the original French - tells the story of 16 year old Marieme (a remarkable showing by young Karidja Touré) who joins a gang of three other girls in an effort to find some status, only to discover that this is not the life she seeks."
Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019)
"Passion brews quietly between an artist and her subject, until together they create a space in which it can briefly flourish, in this sumptuous eighteenth-century romance from Céline Sciamma, one of contemporary French cinema’s most acclaimed auteurs. Summoned to an isolated seaside estate on a secret assignment, Marianne (Noémie Merlant) must find a way to paint a wedding portrait of Héloïse (Adèle Haenel), who is resisting chattel marriage, by furtively observing her. What unfolds in exquisite tension is an exchange of sustained gazes in which the two women come to know each other’s gestures, expressions, and bodies with rapturous intimacy, ultimately forging a subversive creative collaboration as well as a delirious romance. Charged with a yearning that almost transcends time and space, Portrait of a Lady on Fire mines the emotional and artistic possibilities that emerge when women can freely live together and see one another in a world without men." - Criterion
"Céline Sciamma's luminous “Petite Maman” is a once-upon-a-time tale with a twist. Set in present-day France, in an isolated hamlet made for solitude and imagination, it is a story about family ties, childhood reveries and unanswerable questions." - Manohla Dargis