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Film / First Girl I Loved

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Bottom: Sasha. Top: Anne.

First Girl I Loved is a 2016 romantic drama written and directed by Kerem Sanga.

The story is about Anne (Dylan Gelula), a teenage girl, who falls for Sasha (Brianna Hildebrand), a fellow female student at their high school. As she struggles with her feelings, Anne befriends the girl, but also has to handle her best friend Cliff's negative reactions when she tells him about this, along with far worse.

The film provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Ambiguously Gay: Though Anne admits she's gay by the end of the film, it's left unclear what Sasha identifies as, though she'd apparently genuinely reciprocated Anne's feelings earlier.
  • Ambiguous Situation: Anne gets into bed with Sasha at one point, we see them kissing and fondling a bit. Then it's cut to Anne waking up in bed the next day, with it unclear whether anything more happened.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Anne is alone at the end of the film, while Cliff, Sasha and Sasha's mom get away with their actions toward her. Nonetheless, she's accepted her identity and gets a new bike.
  • Coming-Out Story: This is the focus of the film, as Anna slowly comes out to her friend and herself.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: After Anne tells him she's attracted to a girl, Cliff (who'd earlier raped Anne) does all he can do break them apart, which includes trying to date Sasha himself.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Anne loses Sasha by the end of the film, but at least she came to terms with her sexuality.
  • Disappeared Dad: We never see or hear anything of Anne's father. She lives only with her mom.
  • False Rape Accusation: Under pressure from her mother, Sasha says Anne forcefully kissed her (sexual assault, at least in some jurisdictions), when she actually initiated it. Her mother threatens to bring in the police if the photo of this is not removed from their yearbook.
  • Forced Out of the Closet: Anne is outed by Cliff putting a picture into the yearbook which shows her and Sasha kissing at a club.
  • Forceful Kiss: Sasha claims Anne forcibly kissed her when a photo of them kissing is put in the yearbook under pressure from her mother, but in fact she initiated it and the kiss was consensual.
  • Gayngst: Anne suffers greatly throughout the film due to her awakening feelings. First she's raped by her friend, who was sure she felt attracted to him. Then he sabotages her relationship with the girl she's actually into, who then rejects her when a photo of them kissing is distributed, saying Anne forced her. By the end though she's come to terms with her sexuality and moved on.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Due to "Sasha" also being a male name, Cliff doesn't realize at first that Anne's fallen for a girl when she tells him about her crush.
  • Heel Realization: Cliff later realizes he'd forced Anne to have sex with him, and relates the story (without actually saying he did this) to the school counselor. Following this, he starts trying to stand up for Anne somewhat after he'd sabotaged her relationship with Sasha out of homophobia and jealousy.
  • Heteronormative Crusader: Cliff reacts badly when Anne tells him she's attracted to a girl, and starts sabotaging their relationship out of homophobia mixed with jealousy (since he wants Anne). Sasha's mother also isn't happy at all to see it when Cliff puts a photo of them kissing in the yearbook, pushing Sasha into saying that Anne forced her and that she'll call the police if they don't expunge this.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Cliff is attracted to Anne, and it appears he had been for some time. Anne, meanwhile, not only never thought of him that way but in fact is coming to realize that she's a lesbian.
  • Karma Houdini: Cliff rapes Anne, Sasha and Sasha's mom falsely accuse her of sexual assault. None are ever punished for these things.
  • Lipstick Lesbian: Anne, and possibly Sasha, who both have feminine looks/attire.
  • Malicious Slander: Sasha, under pressure from her mother, claims Anne forcefully kissed her (she actually initiated it) when a photo surfaces. Her mother threatens to call the police if the photo isn't removed from their yearbook.
  • Never My Fault: Cliff accuses Anne of leading him on into having sex (though she did no such thing, only viewing him as a friend), when in fact the circumstances show he raped her.
  • Out of the Closet, Into the Fire: After she admits her attraction to a girl, Anne's best friend does everything possible to sabotage things between them out of homophobia and jealousy. His jealousy even leads to him raping her. After she's photographed while kissing Sasha, the object of her affection, Sasha's mother pressures her into claiming Anne had forced her to (Sasha actually initiated it). Their relationship naturally is destroyed, but it spurs Anne to accept her sexuality by the end of the film.
  • Queer Romance: Anne falls for Sasha, another girl at her school, who gradually reciprocates the attraction but then pulls away.
  • Rape as Drama: Cliff pushes Anne into having sex with him. Though she doesn't say no or actively resist it, she's clearly also not happy with this but he ignores every sign until later. Anne also later recounts once being sexually assaulted offscreen when a guy whom she met in a bar made her give him a hand job.
  • STD Immunity: Averted, since near the end of the film Anne gets a test for HIV, worried due to being raped by Cliff when no protection was used. The result is negative.