Previously at the ICA - Films
5 Feb 2012
Hadewijch begins in a French convent and explores the place of faith in contemporary society. Céline, the daughter of a French Minister, and an earnest teenage novice who's ecstatic devotion to her calling, verging on psychotic, is too much even for her fellow nuns. When it becomes clear that Celine's love for Jesus is all too literal and she believes him to be her boyfriend, she is asked to leave the convent and find her way in the world. Returning to Paris she is befriended by Yassine, an Arab teenager, and is drawn into the world of her elder brother, a devout Muslim. An exploration of desire and religious belief in modern times.
Bruno Dumont's (La vie de Jésus, L'humanité) latest is a contemporary examination of a devout young woman experiencing a crisis of faith. Dumont has been heavily influenced throughout his career by Robert Bresson (Pickpocket, Trial of Joan of Arc) and this is particularly close in tone and theme to his iconic Mouchette. It's a revealing examination of a human soul in crisis as a young teenager attempts to transcend the limitations of the material world in which she finds herself. Yet, if this sounds forbidding, it's also worth noting that this is one of Dumont's least harsh representations of the frantic desire to love and be loved.
Dir. Bruno Dumont, France, 2009, French with English subtitles, 120mins
Cast: Julie Sokolowski , Yassine Salime and Karl Sarafidis