“They say that when you get goosebumps, your soul touches your body.”
The penultimate year of school for Masha, Yana and Senia. As greenery proliferates in the classroom and the material from biology class – the physical characteristics of stress – lies like a sonic tapestry beneath the narrative, the schoolgirls wrestle with themselves and others. The silent centre of Kateryna Gornostai’s feature-length debut is 16-year-old Masha – introverted, subtle and in love with aloof classmate Sasha, who challenges her with his passive behaviour. The film evades rough narratives as well as overly simple psychology. When Masha dances alone in her room at night, high above the city, somewhere in the Ukraine, nothing about it seems staged. Rather, it is an invitation to the moment, the true feeling. And one to pain.