Hittman's debut isn't just a brilliantly tactile study of the mounting sexual curiosity and frustration of 14-year-old Lila (Gina Piersanti); it's also an important landmark in the oft-ignored subgenre of realistic movies about female adolescence.
What's exciting about the film is the confidence Hittman brings to it, particularly with her visual choices. The dancing in particular is striking, with surprising cuts and edits. It Felt Like Love isn't a great movie, but it is a promising one, for everyone involved.
The writer-director’s stress on the small, degrading details that attend yearning as well as her protagonist’s desperation and self-deception make it more mood piece than straightforward narrative, but the ultra-confident production proves that Hittman’s a talent to watch.