Journalist at Ouest-France, back from Syria where he lost a photographer friend in an explosion, Jacques (Vincent Lindon) is a prisoner of his fear. It is manifested by partial deafness and boxes masking the windows of his house where he has voluntarily confined himself.
A strange call from the Vatican asking him to sit on a canonical commission of inquiry, intended to evaluate the statements of a young girl, Anna (Galatéa Bellugi), who claims to have seen the Virgin Mary, pushes him out of his confinement.
A strange call from the Vatican
Divided into chapters, like so many stages in this quest for truth, this film by Xavier Giannoli (Marguerite, Superstar, Lost Illusions…), released in theaters in 2018, begins as a documentary investigation. It leads Jacques from the basements of the Vatican, where the archives relating to supposedly supernatural phenomena are kept in the greatest secrecy, to a village in the Hautes-Alpes where the fervor of the pilgrims mixes with the merchants of the temple.
The description of the embarrassment of the Church as of certain Catholics in the face of this event, the ambiguity of the priests who surround Anna, the methods of the commission of inquiry or the recourse to scientific techniques to probe the mystery reflect the concern of the director of get closer to reality.
The mystery of faith
The restrained presence and acting of Vincent Lindon and the astonishing Galatéa Bellugi make their confrontation a moment of rare intensity. To the materiality of the massive body of Vincent Lindon, the director opposes the grace of his young actress, diaphanous and light. In this film, undoubtedly the most personal, Xavier Giannoli concentrated all his obsessions.
Regardless of the resolution of the story, it is the mystery of faith without proof that fascinates him. This “intuition of a transcendence” which has pursued him since childhood and very early on mixed with his desire for cinema. But also the quest for truth and meaning in a hypermediatized world, where the border with lies tends to blur more and more.
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