Best Picture, Again
I've been sick for the last couple of days, so I watched "The Nun's Story" while I sat alone in my apartment, aching and congested. I almost didn't notice the loneliness and aching and congestion, though, because "The Nun's Story" is so good. It takes me to a quiet, thoughtful place, where nothing seems to matter except this question: "What will my story be?"
And although Audrey Hepburn is a great actress in all of her movies, I can't understand why "The Nun's Story" isn't everyone's favorite. People go on and on about "Breakfast at Tiffany's," but this . . . This is by far the best movie she acted in, in my opinion.
I blogged about this movie way back in 2005, but as I watched it today, I felt I needed to blog about it again. My hope is that if you didn't heed my advice then, you'll heed it now.
Here's my original post about it:
Yes, it's late; I know. But I just finished watching "The Nun's Story" on Turner Classic Movies with my mom. When it started, I thought, "Boooo. Who wants to watch a nun's story, even if it does have Audrey Hepburn in the lead role?" The running time is about 2 hours and 50 minutes; I started watching it as the 2nd hour was beginning. I was captivated. CAPTIVATED. (Brooks, you'd LOVE this movie!)
Here is a short summary found on IMDb:
Gabrielle Van Der Mal gave up everything to become a nun. But her faith and her vows are forever being tested: first in the missionary Congo hospital where she assists the brilliant and handsome Dr. Fortunati and then at the mother house in France when World War II has broken out and the nuns are forbidden by the order to take sides.
It was directed by Fred Zinneman in 1959 and was nominated for several academy awards in 1960, including best actress and best picture. Why it didn't actually win any is beyond me. The tagline for the movie is: "The most gripping and dramatic personal story of this decade on the screen!" I think "gripping" is a highly over-used adjective in movie review jargon, but in this case, it's right on the money. It is gripping. Truly. To use a metaphor Brigham Barnes (whose blog can be found here) used in a recent post, I would say that this movie was a dagger that stabbed me to the quick. The proverbial pulls on my heartstrings were in full force. And the ending -- oh, the ending. My mom says I can tell all of you that I am a hopeless romantic like her, and what can I say? It's true. But looking back, the ending was perfect. No, it didn't quite satisfy me with perfect closure, but the story ended in the very beginnings of the 2nd World War. So the incomplete and restless feeling experienced in the last scene was probably necessary for the full emotional effect.
DON'T let that stop you from watching the movie, though! It's wonderful! I don't know how to express to you that this movie is so worth your time. I will just have to tell everyone in person from now on. "Hello, I'm Sara. I think you should watch "The Nun's Story" as soon as you get the chance."
Just watch it. Watch it!
Thing I'm thankful for: antiobiotics