Growing Up

Growing Up

A bittersweet collection of documentaries and a few fiction films on a wide range of childhoods and childhood experiences around the world, from the adventures and idylls of growing up, to coping with personal challenges, and facing terrible tragedies.

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Growing Up
  • Girls Rock!

    Directed by Arne Johnson and Shane King • Documentary • With Carrie Brownstein, Beth Ditto • 2007 • 90 minutes

    At Rock ‘n’ Roll Camp, girls ranging in age from eight to 18 are taught that it’s OK to sweat like a pig, scream like a banshee, wail on their instruments with complete and utter aband...

  • Casa Grande

    Directed by Fellipe Barbosa • Drama • With Marcello Novaes, Suzana Pires, Thales Cavalcanti • 2014 • 115 minutes

    Jean Cavalcanti attends a well reguarded private boys' school. He lives a carefree life of moderate privilege in a gated, custom built house in an affluent neighborhood in suburban Ri...

  • Billy the Kid

    Directed by Jennifer Venditti • Documentary • With Billy P, Penny Baker, Heather Pelletier • 2007 • 84 minutes

    A provocative coming-of-age story, Jennifer Venditti's debut film, BILLY THE KID (2007), is an acclaimed odyssey into the soul of an American teenager. Venditti follows Billy as he navi...

  • Psychobitch

    Directed by Martin Lund • Drama • With Jonas Tidemann, Elli Rhiannon Müller Osbourne, Saara Sipila-Kristoffersen • 2020 • 109 minutes

    Frida is different. Marius, on the other hand is the most perfect boy in class. When they have to work together at school, it's the start of a turbulent and chall...

  • We Need to Talk About Kevin

    Directed by Lynne Ramsay • Drama • With Tilda Swinton, John C. Reilly, Ezra Miller • 2010 • 112 minutes

    A suspenseful and gripping psychological thriller, Lynne Ramsay’s WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN explores the fractious relationship between a mother and her evil son. Tilda Swinton, in a bracing...

  • Scheme Birds

    Directed by Ellen Fiske, Ellinor Hallin • Documentary • 2019 • 86 minutes

    The story of Gemma, a teenage troublemaker, growing up in a world of pigeons and violence. From childhood to motherhood, her life unfolds as innocent games turn towards serious crime. Directors Ellen Fiske and Ellinor Hall...

  • Resistance is Life

    Directed by Apo W. Bazidi • Documentary • 2017 • 73 minutes

    From a refugee camp on the Turkish-Syrian border, an 8-year-old girl named Evlin characterizes the resilience of her hometown of Kobane against ISIS militants. In the midst of the tragic war in Syria, Evlin's story provides hope.

  • Bluebeard (Kékszakállú)

    Directed by Gastón Solnicki • Drama • With Laila Maltz, Lara Tarlowski,
    Katia Szechtman • 2016 • 72 minutes

    Hailed as "an eerie high-modernist fable... mightily minimalist, and drop-dead gorgeous" (Film Comment), Kékszakállú is a beguiling portrait of several young women at the threshold of adu...

  • Adama

    Directed by Simon Rouby • Animation • 2020 • 82 minutes

    ADAMA is a modern and universal story, the coming-of-age tale of a young African boy searching for his brother, just as a new world is about to emerge from the chaos of war.

    12-year-old Adama lives in a remote West African village. Beyond ...

  • Miss Kiet's Children

    Directed by Petra Lataster-Czisch & Peter Lataster • Documentary • 2016 • 113 minutes

    Kiet Engels is the kind of teacher one wishes every schoolchild could have. She is strict but never harsh. She is loving but never soft. Her patience in endless.

    Many of Miss Kiet's pupils are refugees who hav...

  • Lore

    Directed by Cate Shortland • Drama • With Saskia Rosendahl • 2013 • 108 minutes

    Left to fend for themselves after their SS officer father and mother, staunch Nazi believers, are interred by the victorious Allies at the end of World War II, five German children undertake a harrowing journey that ...

  • On the Way to School

    Directed by Pascal Plisson • Documentary • 2013 • 77 minutes

    They live in all four corners of the planet and share a thirst for knowledge. Almost instinctively, they know that their wellbeing (indeed, their survival) depend on knowledge and education. From the dangerous savannahs of Kenya to the...

  • Les Enfants Terribles

    Directed by Ahmet Necdet Çupur • Documentary • 2021 • 93 minutes

    Twenty years ago, Ahmet Necdet Çupur left his village in south-eastern Turkey, against his parents wishes. Now, he is back. But this time as a filmmaker documenting his siblings’ struggles against the same oppressive family culture...

  • School of Babel

    Directed by Julie Bertuccelli • Documentary • 2013 • 89 minutes

    Welcome to one Parisian school's program for newly arrived immigrant children from all over the world. At 'La Grange aux Belles' school in the diverse 10th district of Paris has a program for newly arrived immigrant children that pr...

  • The Inheritors

    Directed by Eugenio Polgovsky • Documentary • 2009 • 90 minutes

    The most highly praised and awarded Mexican documentary in many years, THE INHERITORS by Eugenio Polgovsky immerses us in the daily lives of children who, with their families, survive only by their unrelenting labor.

    The film takes...

  • The Intolerable Burden

    Directed by Chea Prince • Documentary • 2003 • 56 minutes

    In the autumn of 1965, sharecroppers Mae Bertha and Matthew Carter enrolled the youngest eight of their thirteen children in the public schools of Drew, Mississippi. Their decision to send the children to the formerly all white schools wa...

  • Kati With an I

    Directed by Robert Greene • Documentary • 2010 • 86 minutes

    At once universal and personal, this intimate documentary portrait of an Alabama teenage girl on the verge of her high school graduation captures three tumultuous days during which her future is cast into doubt.

    Eighteen-year-old Kati ...

  • Small Wonders

    Directed by Allan Miller • Documentary • 1995 • 77 minutes

    This inspirational documentary deservedly earned a 1995 Academy Award nomination. Divorced mother Roberta Guaspari-Tzavaras taught music in the New York City school system until the budget ax eliminated her job. Dedicated to music and he...

  • 56 UP

    Directed by Michael Apted • Documentary • With Bruce Balden, Jacqueline Basset, Symon Basterfield, Andrew Brackfield, John Brisby, Suzanne Dewey, Nicholas Hitchon, Neil Hughes, Lynn Johnson, Paul Kligerman, Susan Sullivan, Tony Walker, Charles Furneaux • 2012 • 138 minutes

    ”Give me the child ...

  • Oblivion

    Directed by Heddy Honigmann • Documentary • 2008 • 93 minutes

    The latest documentary from Heddy Honigmann (Forever, Metal and Melancholy, O Amor Natural) focuses on Peru's capital city of Lima.

    OBLIVION provides intimate and moving portraits of street musicians, singers, vendors, shoeshine boys...

  • The Children of 209 Saint-Maur Street

    Directed by Ruth Zylberman • Documentary • 2020 • 100 minutes

    209 rue St. Maur is a classic Parisian apartment building in the 10th arrondissement: Stone, built around a courtyard, shops on the bottom floor. In the first decades of the 20th century, it was home to some 300 working class people, ...

  • We Are the Lambeth Boys

    Directed by Karel Reisz • Documentary • With John Rollason, Thomas Ahearne, Patrick Ahearne • 1959 • 53 minutes

    Karel Reisz’s honest and sympathetic depiction of South London teens aimed to challenge the media perception of ‘Teddy Boys’, and would be one of the last films to appear under the Fre...

  • As a Young Girl of Thirteen...

    Directed by Elisabeth Coronel, Florence Gaillard & Arnaud de Mezamat • Documentary • With Simone Lagrange • 2009 • 88 minutes

    In AS A YOUNG GIRL OF 13, Holocaust survivor Simone Lagrange recounts in detail her life before the war, her deportation to Auschwitz-Birkenau, and her role in bringing N...

  • Love & Diane

    Directed by Jennifer Dworkin • Documentary • 2003 • 155 minutes

    Jennifer Dworkin’s groundbreaking documentary LOVE & DIANE presents a searingly honest and moving examination of poverty, welfare and drug rehabilitation in the United States today. Filmed in New York City over a five-year period, D...