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How to Have Sex

Teenagers Tara, Skye, and Em throw themselves into party life during a Mediterranean vacation and have borderline experiences.

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Sun, parties, flirting. The program is set for Tara, Em, and Skye’s first vacation together. The teenagers just finished secondary school and want to let loose in Malia in Crete. Tara has her own agenda. The 16 year old wants to have sex for the first time. When she befriends a group from the hotel, Tara’s plan seems to be getting closer. There are two candidates: Beau Paddy and joker Badger. Tara isn’t sure if she really wants to do it or if she’s sensing the pressure of being the only virgin in the group. When she decides to do it, it isn’t the event that was thought it would be.

The feature-length debut of British director Molly Manning Walker was part of this year’s Cannes program “Un Certain Regard“ where she showed her 2020 short film GOOD THANKS, YOU? Both films are about consent and assault. In an interview, Manning explains that this comes from her own experience and the sometimes re-traumatizing way it is dealt with in films. She proves with her own works that things can get better. Empathetic and free of cliches, she characterizes her young characters who come alive with the help of the fantastic cast (among them Mia McKenna Bruch, “The Witcher“). Instead of creating a victim narrative, she has a nuanced gaze on sexuality and consent. HOW TO HAVE SEX doesn’t offer instructions, but a resolution which leads the protagonist to emerge stronger. Between parties, vomiting, and sexualized recreational programs, the friends care for each other. A powerful and cinematically sophisticated debut, and an important perspective in the still male-dominated film landscape.

Clarissa Lempp (INDIEKINO MAGAZIN)

Translation: Elinor Lewy

Credits

Original title: How to Have Sex
Großbritannien/Griechenland 2023, 98 min
Language: English
Genre: Drama
Director: Molly Manning Walker
Author: Molly Manning Walker
DOP: Nicolas Canniccioni
Montage: Fin Oates
Music: James Jacobs
Distributor: Capelight Pictures
Cast: Mia McKenna-Bruce, Lara Peake, Shaun Thomas, Sam Bottomley, Enva Lewis
Release: 07.12.2023

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Screenings

  • OV Original version
  • OmU Original with German subtitles
  • OmeU Original with English subtitles
English/with English subtitles
All languages

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