Based on her own adolescent experiences, Sadaf Foroughi’s AVA is a gripping debut about a young girl’s coming-of-age in a strict, traditional society. Living with her well-to-do parents in Tehran, Ava is a bright and focused teen whose concerns — friendships, music, social status, academic performance — resemble that of nearly any teenager. When Ava’s mistrustful and overprotective mother questions her relationship with a boy — going so far as to visit a gynecologist — Ava is overwhelmed by a newfound rage. Formerly a model student, Ava begins to rebel against the strictures imposed by her parents, her school, and the society at large.
Critic’s Pick! “Exquisitely photographed… visually inventive… [a] remarkably controlled intensity… Ava looks repression in the eye and doesn’t flinch.”
— The New York Times
“Four Stars! A smart teenage thriller. Ava is made with superb technique and real style.”
– Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
“Spellbinding. Its eponymous teenage girl is a rollicking blend between PERSEPOLIS and THE 400 BLOWS‘ Antoine Doinel.”
— Leonardo Goi, The Film Stage