We all remember our first love. Even though it probably ended in tears, lies, betrayals and recriminations in the playground. However, as we go through life those bad memories seem to fade into the abyss, leaving just the warm and reassuring ones behind. It’s easy to get carried away as our hormones run rampant. To put any misgivings to one and just bask in the glow of attention. Paul falls hard in Fabrice du Welz’s new film, Adoration.

Paul (Thomas Gioria), a 12-year-old-boy, lives a lonely existence with only the creatures in the woods to keep him company. His mother {Anaël Snoek) works at a remote psychiatric hospital. One day his ennui and tranquillity are shattered by the sudden appearance of Gloria (Fantine Harduin). She confides that her uncle (Laurent Lucas) has placed her there in order to steal her inheritance. The pair form an uneasy friendship as he quickly falls under her spell.

Adoration is a haunting and eerie tale of young obsession, control and mental instability. Gloria bursts into Paul’s life, opening up new and exciting possibilities for him. Whilst, deep down, he knows something’s wrong, boredom and loneliness allow him to park his suspicions. Manuel Dacosse’s cinematography is breathtaking, drawing you in to this teenage fantasy world where ogres and danger stalk the shadows. Adoration is a twisted love story, enshrouded in mystery and intrigue.

Adoration screens again at London Film Festival on 11 & 13 October.