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  • James Rutherford

'We Are the Best!': The Delightful Tale of Three 13-Year-Old Swedish Girls Forming a Punk Band


We Are the Best! (Vi Är Bäst!) (2013) is a delightful Swedish film about a trio of 13-year-old girls who form their own punk rock band in Stockholm circa 1982. Spurred on by a group of boys at their youth club who mock their androgynous appearances, Bobo (Mira Barkhammar) and Klara (Mira Grosin) invite shy outcast Hedvig (Liv LeMoyne) to join the burgeoning venture—intent on showing up the boys and their own fledgling punk ensemble.


Initially realizing a distinct disadvantage due to their lack of both musical instruments and musical training, Bobo and Klara recruit Hedvig after seeing her classical guitar performance at the local talent show. Hedvig lends her acumen to their endeavor, helping to train her cohorts in musical structure and collaboration—ultimately becoming convinced to adopt a short-haired punk appearance as well. Hedvig's mother (Ann-Sofie Rase) is infuriated by her daughter's turn however, creating a dramatic clash between Hedvig's strict religious upbringing and her newfound appreciation for agitation.


Based on the graphic novel "Never Goodnight" by Coco Moodysson and directed by her husband Lukas Moodysson (Show Me Love, Lilya 4-ever), We Are the Best! is a spirited depiction of adolescent rebellion. Major kudos to the Moodyssons for delivering such a fresh illustration of youthful self-actualization in such a refreshingly candid manner. Barkhammar, Grosin and LeMoyne, for their part, deliver wonderfully naturalistic performances as spirited youths embracing their own incongruity with an entirely unapologetic "fuck you" attitude in the face of early-1980's society.

 

Watch the trailer:


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