★★★★ | North Sea Texas

Pim is a young boy from a small Belgian coastal town who lives a dreary existence with his mother, Yvette, who is a boozy accordion player.

Pim dreams of beauty pageants, princesses and Gino, the handsome boy next door to escape life with his blowsy neglectful mother. As Pim moves into his teenage years, his life takes on unexpected turns as he becomes more deeply involved with Gino and his family and a hot and hunky young traveller called Zoltan arrives back on the scene.

Cult short filmmaker Bavo Defume has made a film which is inspired more by beauty than by social realism. The intention was to make a film which depicts more than the sometimes grey and gritty world we can inhabit. The film is set in an unspecified time period with classic retro patterns and furniture and luscious coastal landscapes.

Although the world that the characters inhabit is sometimes stylised, the acting is natural and convincing. The result is a film which is both moving and beautiful to watch. It also holds the viewer’s interest through the drama played out so convincingly between the young actors. Coming of age dramas don’t get much more luscious, stylish and watchable than this.

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Originally released: 2012