It’s All Frightfully Romantic: Heavenly Creatures and the Dark Power of Imagination

Like most teenage girls, Pauline Parker (Melanie Lynskey) feels powerless. Suffocated by the tedium of her prim and proper girls’ school, all she wants to do is write stories. With her untamed, curly black hair, her hunched stance, and her downturned mouth, she’s like a storm cloud. Her life is irrevocably changed by the arrival of the new girl, Juliet Hulme (Kate Winslet, in her first feature film role). Glamorous, well-spoken, and confident, she’s already travelled the world with her parents. But Juliet, choosing the name “Antoinette” and smugly correcting her French teacher’s grammar, immediately marks herself as a rebel with a romantic streak. Pauline and Juliet’s friendship will both liberate and entrap them, empower and destroy them.

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Illustration by Nikki October.