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Films we love: ‘God help the girl’

“A Belle & Sebastian album cover come to life”. This is the very untypical story of Eve, who escapes a hospital to start a music group, of James, the lifeguard that will also take care of her outside of the swimming pool, and of Cassie, who will follow them without a single doubt. A love declaration to the city of Glasgow. “A musical that isn’t a musical”. A film which changes depending on who watches it. And we couldn’t love it more.

A CHARMING TALE

‘They’re slightly untypical. They’re sort of “renaissance teenagers.” They’re trying to read better, trying to stay up at night […] They’re super-pretentious, really snobby, but I think that’s quite all right.’
Stuart Murdoch

Olly Alexander, Emily Browning and Hannah Murray

Olly Alexander, Emily Browning and Hannah Murray

 

God Help the Girl is exactly what anybody could expect of a movie written and directed by Stuart Murdoch, founder, life and soul of Belle and Sebastian, who “just” wanted to make one of his albums come to life. And, we promise, he did. He did it big time.

Brilliant acting, impeccable costumes, a big retro feeling and, of course, great music. That’s what defines Murdoch’s his first foray into the world of films, a movie that follows the album of the same title which was released in 2009 telling the troubles and adventures of young Eve, who flees the clinic where she’s fighting an eating disorder and starts a band.

This character first came to Murdoch one night, while out for a run along a Sheffield canal. “Hearing that first song was like a radio switching on inside my head. This was before digital recorders, so I used a tiny pencil and a bit of paper and wrote: God help the girl, she needs all the help she can get. That was the seed”.

The songs kept coming and started giving rise to a whole story, the author told The Guardian. “I pretty quickly realised this could be the backbone for a film. The character of Eve came along and I followed her. I never thought I’d make a feature film like this”.

Perfection as a hipster

And there's also a cute guy with a French accent!

And there’s also a cute guy with a French accent!

 

This is not a movie meant to be overanalysed. It’s not extremely deep, and won’t teach anybody a great life lesson. This is a movie meant to be beautiful. Every single detail of this work falls in its exact place, originating a perfect set where everything fits. This is a charming tale where reality becomes flexible and where things don’t need to happen in a logical way. Where the absurd is present in almost every scene. So don’t try to relate it all to the real world, or you will just ruin the whole experience. Do not take it too seriously.

 We don’t want to tell you too much about it. We want you to discover it for yourself, and to find out what it means to you and how it makes you feel. Enjoy its lightness, and let its rougher aspects get inside of you without realizing. Sit and enjoy, but be warned: don’t expect it all to be pretty. There’s a great deal of darkness in this tale, a remarkable amount of pain. Because pain is also a big part of beauty, isn’t it?

 

God Help the Girl – ‘I’ll have to dance with Cassie’

Enjoy,
The Minimalista

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