Lourdes Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 7 Ratings

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  • Summary: Christine has been confined to a wheelchair for most of her life. In order to esacpe her isolation, she makes a journey to Lourdes, the iconic site of pilgrimage in the Pyrenees Mountains. She wakes up one morning seemingly cured by a miracle. The leader of the pilgrimage group, a handsome 40 year-old volunteer from the Order of Malta, begins to take an interest in her. She tries to hold on to this newfound chance for happiness while her cure provokes envy and admiration. (Palisades Tartan) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 9
  2. Negative: 1 out of 9
  1. Sly and suggestive, Lourdes is a cosmic black comedy that bumps up against the metaphysical.
  2. Beautifully led by birdlike Sylvie Testud as an ailing young woman in a wheelchair, every character (pilgrim and helper alike) exhibits a soul. And shaped with confident talent by the Austrian filmmaker, every serenely composed shot matters.
  3. 80
    This drama is something of a miracle itself: a film dealing with religion that is refreshingly free of dogma.
  4. One of the pleasures of this intelligent, rigorously thoughtful, somewhat sly film is that it takes place in the space between the inexplicable (no explanation is possible) and the unexplained (enlightenment might be around the corner).
  5. Reviewed by: Daniel Eagan
    Fascinating on social and theological levels, the film is less compelling as a straightforward narrative. Still, adventurous filmgoers will be rewarded by its unusually open-ended storyline.
  6. Reviewed by: Karina Longworth
    The film delves deeper into the pain and pleasure of watching other people experience the wonderful things you dream of happening to you. In that sense, Hausner has crafted a kind of meta-riff on the masochistic lure of cinema itself.
  7. 38
    It'll be a real miracle if anyone manages to stay awake throughout this extravagantly dull film.

See all 9 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 1 out of 2
  1. Feb 20, 2011
    Innovating and artistic - In "Lourdes" the existential converges with the mysterious and the distinct with the abstract.

    Christine is a
    young woman with Multiple Schlerosis. She is chained to a wheelchair and can only get out if she signs up for cultural or Christian trips. Christine has previously visited Rome, but her next destination is Lourdes, the iconic site of pilgrimage in the Pyreenes mountains.

    Austrian Jessica Hausner's third feature plays out in the Christian pilgrimage town Lourdes, a fine choice of location, where the virgin Mary apparently appeared to the 14 year old girl Bernadette Soubirous in 1858. Hausner here tells the story about a reserved dough smiling and obliging woman who arrives at Lourdes hoping to be cured of her chronic illness. Jessica Hausner's quiet reflection of the intangibility concerning miracles and peoples individual relations to their faith is intellectually debated and asks several interesting questions that are also answered. Even though Hausner's film has elements of divinity by it in the use of music and some remarkable scenes, it is by no means a overly religious film. "Lourdes" is rather a concentrated study of a an enigmatic theme and a film where the characters reactions and reception to the abstract is the core.

    Martin Gschlacht's skillful and structural photography compliments Hausners clear vision, and her steady, stringent and partly static direction is at it's best when she films the main character from versatile perspectives and creates descriptive portraits of an archetype character, excellent played by Sylvie Testud in a vital and radiating interpretation of a character that only has her face and her words to express herself with. Most actors delivers convincing acting and Hausner's film has a strong humane warmth that shines through the heroines being, and an elusive mood that is effectuated by the esoteric faces of the guests and employees at the place that has been called the catholic church's answer to Disneyland. This is a thoughtful and innovating film from a director with a recognizable personal style where one is left feeling like having seen something that lasted significantly longer than it's running time.
  2. Dec 20, 2011
    Be prepared folks, for the single most pointless boring movie ever made. Seriously, in my time I have watched some real stinkers but this is in a whole new category of boring. Only watched it as my girfriend is French. She was comatose and drooling at the end of it. I suppose you're wondering why we watched it to the end? Basically because we literally couldn't believe that absolutely nothing would happen in an entire film, that a film could be this dull. Surely ... Expand