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Portrait of a Lady on Fire (15)

Members' Screening

Two women embrace on a windswept beach

Art and romance intertwine in this magnificent new drama from acclaimed filmmaker Céline Sciamma.

Set in late eighteenth-century France, a wealthy countess hopes to find an affluent husband for her sheltered but strong-willed daughter Héloïse (Adèle Haenel), commissioning painter Marianne (Noémie Merlant) to paint a wedding portrait of her.

After being instructed to complete the portrait in secret, Marianne poses as Héloïse's hired companion, observing her by day and painting her by night. However, as the two women grow closer, their intimacy and attraction begins to blossom, paving the way for a simmering, star-crossed romance.

A heartbreaking period piece told with a distinctly modern feminist energy, Sciamma's film became the first female-directed film to win the Queer Palm at last year's Cannes Film Festival, where it also won Best Screenplay.

France 2019 Dir Céline Sciamma 122 min

Barbican Cinema 2