- 13 Aug 10
It's never quite fly-on-the-wall, but the girls' own editorialising does produce some interesting effects...
Don’t expect deprivation tourism. Maya Derrington’s acclaimed, cleverly orchestrated documentary is far too clever for that sort of thing. Shot around Dublin’s Basin Street flats, Pyjama Girls pitches the ubiquitous garments of the title as part of a punk rock aesthetic.
The girls in question, part of a broader class of city-dwelling PJ lovers, are two bright young things named Lauren Dempsey and Tara Salinger. As Ms. Derrington’s arresting film opens, Lauren lives with her grandmother Peggy; her mother has disappeared off the scene years earlier. Heroin, we are informed, was a major factor. Tara, Lauren’s BF and constant companion, appears to live a more settled existence nearby, but like Lauren, she has been getting in trouble at school and elsewhere.
Regardless of their grim social circumstances, Lauren and Tara are articulate and wise beyond their years. Lauren deftly plays around with language (Ballyfermot is sometimes Ballier and other times, the Ferma), references The Magdalene Sisters and Adam And Paul in conversation and is more than capable of locating pyjama wearing within a grander anarchic scheme. If society doesn’t care about them, she points out, why should they care about society’s rules?