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How to Have Sex

Country: United Kingdom, Language: English, 98 mins

  • Director: Molly Manning Walker
  • Writer: Molly Manning Walker
  • Producer: Farhana Bhula, Ben Coren, Ben Coren, Marie-Elena Dyche, Harriet Harper-Jones, Phil Hunt, Kristin Irving, Fionnuala Jamison, Nathanaël Karmitz, Giorgos Karnavas, Konstantinos Kontovrakis, Emily Leo, Ivana MacKinnon, Compton Ross

CGiii Comment

Three British teenage girls go on a rite-of-passage holiday, drinking, clubbing, and hooking up in what should be the best summer of their lives. As they dance their way across the sun-drenched streets of Malia, they find themselves navigating the complexities of sex, consent, and self-discovery.

While the girls seem initially equally captivated by the nonstop bacchanal, the film’s increasing focus on bubbly, inexperienced Tara — who carefully reconsiders her vacation, her friendships, and herself after a questionably consensual late-night encounter on the beach — turns an incisive viewing experience into a searingly unforgettable one. In her feature debut, Molly Manning Walker embeds a devastatingly honest examination of sexuality and consent within a multifaceted portrait of female friendship, all set against the backdrop of a vivid rendering of alcohol-fueled party culture.

Manning Walker’s script deftly captures her young protagonists’ complicated bond, imparting vulnerabilities and jealousies in dialogue that never feels less than fully authentic. Actress Mia McKenna-Bruce allows us extraordinary access into Tara’s constantly shifting emotional state, unmistakably imparting her character’s unvoiced trauma and confusion.—HZ


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Cast & Characters

Mia McKenna-Bruce
Lara Peake
Samuel Bottomley
Daisy Jelley (as Gemma)
Shaun Thomas
Eilidh Loan (as Fi)
Enva Lewis
Laura Ambler