The Hill Where Lionesses Roar, a film by Luàna Bajrami

10 May 2022

Luàna Bajrami first came to my attention in her role as Sophie, in Céline Sciamma’s stellar 2019 film Portrait of a Lady on Fire, but the French-Kosovar actor is also a writer and director, and La Colline Où Rugissent Les Lionnes (The Hill Where Lionesses Roar), trailer, is her debut feature:

Best friends Jeta, Li and Qe live in a remote Kosovan village from which they see no way out. Bored and restless, the young women spend their days dreaming big but not living large – until, in a moment of aimless distraction, they rebrand themselves as a gang and fall into a life of crime. Exhilarated by the newfound sense of independence offered by their illegal pursuits, the trio soon discover that their ill-gotten gains come with some dangerous caveats.

The parallels between Bajrami’s film and Portrait of a Lady on Fire are intriguing, with — to be succinct — both stories featuring three women contravening social norms.

While The Hill Where Lionesses Roar screened at last year’s Melbourne International Film Festival, it didn’t appear to have a wider Australian theatrical release, so it looks like streaming may be the only option for seeing the film in this part of the world.

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