The Souvenir is a beautiful, personal memoir on film. It’s one of the year’s best.

Honor Swinton Byrne in <em>The Souvenir.</em>” src=”https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/XC3JJXCAS2E8pH_lBL_WmM-vg28=/309×0:1749×1080/1310×983/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_image/image/63838582/souvenircover.0.jpg”></p>
<p>Honor Swinton Byrne stars alongside her mother, Tilda Swinton, in an exquisite story drawn from director Joanna Hogg’s youth.</p>
<p>It’s difficult to get your footing in <em>The Souvenir</em>, Joanna Hogg’s extraordinary memoir-in-a-film about a youthful romance gone very sour. It unfolds as a cascade of memories. Characters are not introduced so much as they first appear in the background of a scene and then, in the next, become central. Sometimes we catch a quick glimpse of a half-focused face, and by the time we figure out what we’re looking at, we’re on to the next moment. There’s a meal here, a glance there, a still landscape while a letter is read in voiceover; sometimes days or weeks elapse between scenes, time sliding inexorably forward. </p>
<p><em>The Souvenir</em> doesn’t knit the threads together too tightly. It asks us to weave ourselves in.</p>
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