Tali Shalom-Ezer’s directorial debut, “Princess,” a feral fairytale of a girl at the brink of puberty, works from an easygoing accumulation of details more than shaped drama, which turns out to be a strength. Perhaps its best element is Shira Haas, the actress who plays twelve-year-old Adar, conveying confounding but stubborn emotions with ease. In an atmosphere that already simmers with the tactile and erotic, Adar meets Alan (Adar Zohar-Hanetz), a slightly older boy, homeless, who is almost her double. Adventures ensue in drowsy, warm weather, until boundaries are broached. (Shalom-Ezer has invoked Bergman as an influence on how the betrayal is shown.) A major part of the tantalizing, offhand mood of the movie is the cinematography by Radek Ladczuk (“The Babadook”). With Keren Mor, Ori Pfeffer, Adar Zohar-Hanetz. 92m. (Ray Pride)
“Princess” opens Friday, June 17 at Facets. The international trailer is below.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published soon. Previews of the project are on Twitter and on Instagram as Ghost Signs Chicago. More photography on Instagram.