Milez Das (Rohit Shivdas)’s review published on Letterboxd:
"I was in love with her and she was in love with me too."
You can relate to Thelma when she arrives at her new college, far away from her home. She has a new apartment for herself, she is shy, her parents call everyday to check on her and have her time table with them. Suddenly life takes a turn for Thelma when she has a seizure while studying in the library. But the solution for it remains a mystery for her even though she gets a diagnosis from her doctor.
But to her realization it comes all to her falling in love with Anja. Thelma feels that sudden rush in her body when she sees Anja, she has fallen in love with her and Anja too has fallen in love with her. Thelma quite resists her feeling as she puts her faith in forward at times. She is reluctant to try things but when she gets a nod from her father and with her feeling trying to get out when she see Anja it all comes down to her unknown abilities trigger inexplicable powers and what she can do with them.
Directed by Joachim Trier, Thelma is a beautiful love story that reflects with a dark past that relate with the powers that were repressed after an incident that throws everyone into a defense protocol. The most beautiful sequence of this movie features in the ballet theater where the first touch of Anja makes Thelma's body rush in with a feeling like an thunderbolt passed through her.
Thelma becomes an origin story to some extent. But what differentiates Thelma is how she goes through her journey of acceptance of who she is. The flashbacks are heavy handed pulling back to the first frame of the movie that stuck with me until it was all known. There are sequences in this movie that can make you cold at times with the supernatural theme that prolongs with the dark thoughts that initiate them.
Thelma is filled with many underlinings from suppression, desire, lust, love, religion, darkness and supernatural phenomenon. It is beautiful to watch as every frame is spellbinding with its rendering beauty. There is a struggle when you don't know what is going in with you, why is this happening and what it all means. It absorbs in this chaos that goes inside your head.
Eili Harboe as Thelma is just breathtaking to watch from start to finish. Her expressions tell you all. Her smile is a beauty of its own when she sees Anja. Eili's control over her character's discovery of a journey that opens something that she has to take in and know what she wants to do with it. Eili's scenes with Kaya Wilkins who plays Anja are really framed like a dream like sequence, like the one which she swims deep in the lake, coming up in the swimming pool where she meets Anja and kisses her is just something breathtaking to witness.
Thelma is a moving story of love that takes a turn when those feelings of love trigger inexplicable powers. It is a story that takes you to a journey along with Thelma. You have to chooses as Thelma to what to make of it. Eili Harboe is just exceptional as Thelma and her chemistry with Kaya Wilkins is as beautiful as it can get. It is chaotically supernaturally beautifully told story that you must not miss!!!