Hadewijch, a novice nun, shocks the mother superior of her convent with her ecstatic blind faith and is kicked out of the order. She returns to her previous life as Céline, a privileged young Parisian who is the daughter of a government minister. But when she meets a young, disadvantaged Arab who introduces her to his fundamentalist brother, her beliefs take an unexpected turn. Struggling to find her path in the real world, she is torn between grace and madness in her rage and passionate love for God.
Largely self-taught, director Bruno Dumont is a key (if controversial) figure in contemporary world cinema who won grand prizes at Cannes with L’humanité (1999) and Flanders (2006). In Hadewijch, his fifth feature, he has created his most mature and powerful film to date. Full of rich ideas and questions, the film leaves you with enough to talk about for days. (105 mins., 35mm)