Review: 'Stop-Zemlia' gets in touch with teen angst and ennui, Ukraine-style

1/22/2022 9:40:00 AM

Review: 'Stop-Zemlia' gets in touch with teen angst and ennui, Ukraine-style

Review: 'Stop-Zemlia' gets in touch with teen angst and ennui, Ukraine-style

A documentary-style coming-of-age drama from Ukraine, Kateryna Gornostai's 'Stop-Zemlia' focuses on a teenage girl and her two besties.

.Ukrainian filmmaker Kateryna Gornostai turns to her teenage years, in all their feelings, friendship and fumbling, for her directorial debut, “Stop-Zemlia,” an immersive portrait of high school life, that time when young adults muddle through the process of becoming themselves.

Opening with a series of portraits of her teenage characters pulled from documentary-style interviews peppered throughout the film, the narrative zeroes in on Masha (Maria Fedorchenko), one of the kids on the outside of the popular gang, who finds tight-knit companionship with her two best friends, Yana (Yana Isaienko) and Senia (Arsenii Markov). This trio is often nihilist about the state of the world, but Masha has a comfortable life. She experiences the kind of universal teen angst that stems from her unrequited longing for connection, belonging and, of course, the cute boy in class, Sasha (Oleksandr Ivanov).

Read more: Los Angeles Times »

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