Sarah Plays a Werewolf ★★★½

Equal parts Jacques Rivette and Lodge Kerrigan, Swiss director Katharina Wyss’ beguiling and claustrophobic debut feature might well represent the emergence of a major new talent. Here, the disconnect between stage and life creates a chasm for an awkward teen to fall into. Loane Balthasar convincingly charts her character’s psychological disintegration, with ample support from Wyss’ suggestive compositional choices and sound editing. For a long time, the film resists pathologizing the titular character, which makes its third act plunge into a recognizable form of madness and a series of familial characterizations that tend toward allegory all the more disappointing. Still, a film with sureness of vision and an uncomfortable sense of conviction…