Critic Consensus: As bewitchingly ambiguous as it is beautifully shot, Lourdes explores profound themes with subtlety and a deft comic touch -- and a marvelous performance from its star, Sylvie Testud.
Watch it now
as Mrs. Hartl
as Father Nigl
as Mrs. Huber
as Mrs. Spor
as Jean-Pierre Bely
as Mr. Hruby
as Mr. Oliveti
as Mr. Oliveti
as Mrs. Oliveti
Critic Reviews for Lourdes
In a film rich with provocative questions, Hausner audaciously examines the ambivalent nature of miracles. Are they gifts from a loving God or random occurrences, bereft of any moral or meaning?
A provocative and surprising pleasure that may persuade even the most hardened rationalists to reconsider what religion means as a sanctity to those who have few other choices in life.
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.
Audience Reviews for Lourdes
A beautifully subtle lead performance from Sylvie Testud truly gifts this unusual and enigmatic film that can be read a multitude of ways (undoubtedly depending on the viewers own spirituality and/or religious beliefs), even to the point where it becomes unclassifiable (drama, black comedy, satire).
So thats what Lourdes is like? What a depressing place. An endless procession of ritual and prayer, hope and despair, and maybe, just maybe the chance of a miracle, but most likely, not a chance. A thought-provoking, slow (well, your main character IS paralized from the neck down) and pragmatic film about the possibilities of faith and grace..
I saw this at the Cleveland International Film Fest. It reminded me a bit of Fellini's Nights of Cabiria especially with its presentation of Catholic rituals. Sylvie Testud does a wonderful job in portraying Christine as a real person with real depth. But there is a great cast of characters surrounding her. I found that the movie is really about how the whole group of pilgrims seeking healing and the red cross helpers react to Christine and the miracle promising site of Lourdes. The movie is slowly paced. Sometimes the camera lingering over the landscape or faces that are still and quiet seems a bit much. But when it lingers on the religious ceremonies and holy places it reveals the repetition and sometimes meaninglessness of these old traditions. People put so much hope in them anyways. I think that this movie was made in a way though that will let believers continue to believe and non-believers continue to doubt. It is ambiguous. I liked some of the advice the head priest and the head lady of the red cross gave a couple times though I disagreed with their assuming that all miracles and personal changes are a result of faith in God, Jesus, or Mother Mary. I liked hearing the doctors' scientific explanation for the roller coaster ebbing and flowing of multiple sclerosis symptoms. I liked the questions the two single middle aged ladies asked throughout as they try to make sense of it all.
Discuss Lourdes on our Movie forum!