The Passion of Joan of Arc
October 20, 2018
Co-Presenter: Dr. Ulrike Wiethaus, Professor in the Department for the Study of Religions and American Ethnic Studies Program, Wake Forest University
In her 1431 trial, Jeanne d’Arc is charged with heresy and pressured to recant her claims of holy visions before an ecclesiastical court. With an astonishing performance by Renée Jeanne Falconetti in the title role, this is among the most emotionally and spiritually compelling films in the history of cinema.
November 10, 2018
Co-Presenter: Dr. Katherine Shaner, Assistant Professor of New Testament, Wake Forest University School of Divinity
A masterpiece of building tension painted in vibrant color across a soaring landscape, director Michael Powell called it “the most erotic film that I ever made.” Film scholar and critic Kent Jones describes the film as addressing “an enduring misconception: the longing, indeed fervent, belief that reality can be reconfigured to conform to an ideal image.” The film is based on an acclaimed novel by Rumer Godden who described her creativity as a gift of the Holy Spirit and nuns as “irresistibly dramatic.”
December 15, 2018
Co-Presenter: Dr. Mary Dalton, Professor of Communication and Film and Media Studies, Wake Forest University
Set in a Polish Benedictine convent just after the end of World War II, The Innocents contrasts the quiet order of religious life with chaos and destruction outside. But the moments of beauty and joy found during choir or the recreation hour are short lived. They are punctuated by the screams of a sister suffering in childbirth, interrupted by menacing soldiers at the gate. Directed by a woman with a nearly all-female cast, this is an extraordinary meditation on faith and doubt, love and purpose from the perspective of women.