DVD: Lourdes (U)

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The Independent Culture

Subtle, sensitive and slippery, Austrian director Jessica Hausner's French language film is a quiet delight. Sylvie Testud is Christine, a multiple sclerosis sufferer on an organised pilgrimage to Lourdes.

Whether or not she really believes in the religious fever the resort packages is unclear, and an apparent healing does little to iron out the delicious ambiguities of Hausner's film. Is it a miracle, or simple remission? Both the character of Christine and Hausner herself take a detached look at the Lourdes circus. Testud is perfect: fragile but also silently knowing, she becomes luminous with cautious joy, hope and doubt post-cure. All is left open here – even a miracle.