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Perfume De Violeta review

The story of two teenage girls living in Mexico City, Perfume De Violeta takes a look at the lives of rebellious Yessica (Ximena Ayala), who endures an impoverished home life, and Miriam (Nancy Gutiérrez), who lives with her over-protective single mother in an affluent neighbourhood. The girls are close, but Yessica is unable to confide to Miriam that she's being regularly raped by her half-brother...

Further proof of the current resurgence of Latin American cinema (Amores Perros, Y Tu Mamá También, the five-star City Of God), this Mexican drama draws on a true-life story to offer a powerful critique of a brutally exploitative, macho society. Director Maryse Sistach eschews rabble-rousing melodramatics in favour of a more restrained, observational approach, filling her frames with subtle images of entrapment, and there's a brace of fine performances from the female leads.

Admittedly it's not as cinematic as the best Latino movies - - the scale seems more suited to TV - - but there's an intimacy here that makes up for any lack of scope.

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