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While Ava may not reach the rousing heights of the similarly-themed titles like Wadjda and Mustang, it certainly puts its sharp-eyed filmmaker Foroughi on the cinematic map.
Lurching relentlessly from one conflict to another, the movie distills its emotions - and maintains its momentum - in conversations of remarkably controlled intensity.
At its most gripping, Ava communicates...familiar adolescent agonies through formal detail that makes them smolder anew.
Not too often do we see an Iranian film starring and directed by women, but Ava is a good start for much-needed representation.
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