Carol Cohen
Owen Gleiberman
April 18, 2007 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Stephanie Daley

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
performer
Tilda Swinton, Amber Tamblyn, Timothy Hutton
director
Hilary Brougher
distributor
Regent Entertainment
author
Hilary Brougher
genre
Drama

We gave it an A-

In Stephanie Daley, a 16-year-old Christian girl, played with exploratory shy grace by Amber Tamblyn, is accused of murdering her newborn infant. But did she even know that she was pregnant? That’s what Tilda Swinton, as a forensic psychologist who is about to have a baby herself, must determine. Shot in a pinpoint, suggestive handheld style, this lacerating drama from writer-director Hilary Brougher shines a piercing light onto some of the hidden terrors of women, especially in an era when abstinence can shade into ignorance. The scary culminating flashback, in which Stephanie gives birth — in a public restroom, on a high school ski trip — is a marvel of authentic disturbance.

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