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Female friendship lies at the heart of Pilar Palomero’s celebrated coming-of-age drama, which premiered in the prestigious Generation Kplus programme at the 2020 Berlin International Film Festival. Set in the contradictory world of early 1990s Spain, Schoolgirls tells the story of Celia, an 11-year-old girl who studies at an all-girls Catholic school.
Under the oppressive control of the school’s nuns, she tries her best not to make a fuss. She is obedient, thoughtful and a responsible student. But the onset of puberty throws changes at the young Celia, and the sudden arrival of a new classmate, Brisa, shakes up her comfortable world.
A bond quickly develops between Celia and Brisa, and together they rally against the authority figures and their rigid rules. As they enter adolescence and seek new experiences, Celia begins to question everything she had previously taken for granted. While the journey is never easy, Celia discovers that learning to let go, move on and grow up can be the adventure of a lifetime.