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Germany, 1970 (MIFF 1971, Programme 7)

Director: Jerzy Skolimowski

An adolescent's initiation into the turmoils of love is expressed by the tragic pursuit of a woman by a young boy.

A 15-year-old boy becomes obsessed with a girl several years older, with whom he works as an attendant at a rather seamy London swimming baths. His need for love aroused, he is forever trying to impress her, protect her, following her about relentlessly even when she is in the company of other men. At the baths she shows him the ropes, treating him with good natured condescension, but never as a man.

His zealous efforts to impress and to be recognised as a man often result in humorous incidents, but his feelings unrequited gradually lead to tragic consequences.

Skolimowski has avoided tawdriness by a sympathy in. and awareness of, the excessive but essentially pure actions and reactions of his love-smitten boy who is still a virgin despite today's permissiveness…

Sharply-edged hues, taut editing, a fine musical accomp, good playing alongside the leads… Skolimowski's frisky, playful but revealing direction…

Mosk in Variety

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