Girls Town is the coming-of-age story of a trio of high-school girls from Queens, New York, described by director and co-writer McKay as a "feminist film". Patti (Taylor), Emma (Grace) and Nikki (Ellis) are best friends whose worlds are shattered by the suicide of Angela (Harris), the fourth member of their interracial posse. Discovering in Angela's diary that she'd been raped by a middle-class white male, they pledge to be more open with one another and unite to fight against an oppressive society.
Shot in 15 days on a poverty-line budget, this drama opts for gritty realism rather than melodramatics. The script was assembled via improvisational workshops, and it shows: there's a hell of a lot of hanging around and listening to the characters develop their social consciousness. Nevertheless, it has a fine rap soundtrack, some convincing performances, and by the end you're left in no doubt that the personal is indeed the political.
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