Another outstanding piece of contemporary British film, as a teenage schoolgirl finds herself alone and left responsible for her younger brother. Soul destroying in so many ways, performances as good as any you'll find, a depiction of a world we'd like to ignore but, unfortunately, reinforcing a theme whose variations are common and increasingly so.
Shola (Bukky Bakray), or Rocks, as she's known, lives in a London council flat with her younger brother Emmanuel (D'angelou Osei Kissiedu) and their single mother. Mum is busy and stressed, leaving Rocks to spend all her free time with school friends. One day, she comes home to find her life radically altered: she is suddenly on her own with a child to take care of. Gavron could easily have steered Rocks into miserabilism, but delivers instead a surprising portrait of resilience. Rocks is mercurial, impulsive, and deeply sensitive - not unusual for her age, she sometimes makes desperately poor decisions, for what look to her like good reasons. When her closest friend Sumaya (Kosar Ali) tries to help, Rocks doesn't know how to accept it, blinded by Sumaya's two-parent household and relative comfort.
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