The Monastery: Mr. Vig and the Nun (2006)
A lovable, eighty-two year old virgin living alone in a dilapidated Danish castle enlists the aid of an ambitious and headstrong Russian Orthodox nun in realizing his lifelong dream of transforming his vast abode into a Russian Orthodox monastery in filmmaker Pernille Rose Gronkjær's heartwarming, and often humorous, documentary. Mr. Vig is an amiable eccentric who finally finds his dream coming to fruition as controlling nun Sister Ambrosija agrees to send a group of nuns and priests to evaluate and develop the site. An unapologetically overbearing woman who has a very precise vision of how the monastery should be run, Sister Ambrosija commences to making a seemingly-endless list of repair demands and the put-upon Mr. Vig implores the filmmaker for advice on dealing with the slightly-boorish bride of Christ. Despite their initial differences and occasional misgivings, however, Mr. Vig and Sister Ambrosija soon form a unique and exceptional bond as they work together for the good of a common cause. … More
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Critic Reviews for The Monastery: Mr. Vig and the Nun
The film, letting us read between the lines, creates a charming depiction of two people who become necessary to each other.
The truths of [the subject's] life, no matter how unbelievable they may seem at times, make him almost heroic and the film almost perfect.
Takes 80-plus minutes to cover what happened over the next six years as this oddest of odd couples feud, fuss and finally become friends.
You can't blame Grønkjær for being enamored of her subjects, but it's odd that a documentary about the faithful ultimately feels like a spiritual tourist attraction.
A dull and dreary film that derives its entertainment value from exploiting the sociopathology of its central character.
Against all odds, you'll leave this remarkable film caring quite a bit for the old coot -- surely a sign of a very good documentary
A psychologically rich documentary about the spiritual practice of generosity and the difficulty we all have in letting go of rigid ideas and habit energies which have dominated our lives.
This slim, sparsely drawn and gently affecting documentary fulfills the promise of Mr. Vig's singular visage.
Pernille Rose Grønkjær's portrait of Mr. Vig is one of affecting honesty.
Anyone who has ever been involved in a dream building or renovation project will be especially fascinated with this real-life adventure-cum-fairy tale.
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