With Sicily as his backdrop, Piero Messina (assistant director on Paolo Sorrentino’s THE GREAT BEAUTY) navigates a range of emotions in telling the strange, irresistible story of the relationship between two women from different generations. Academy Award®-winner Juliette Binoche stars as Anna, who is meeting her son Giuseppe’s French girlfriend, Jeanne (Lou de Laâge), in the lead up to Easter festivities. Young and enchanting, Jeanne arrived with excitement before Giuseppe, whose continued delays and lack of presence cast a dark, mysterious shadow over the household. Why is Giuseppe not here and when will he appear? As Anna and Jeanne wait, they grow closer than either imagined they would, despite the secrets they’re harboring from one another.
It’s December 1945, and the Second World War is finally over. Mathilde, a young French Red Cross doctor, finds herself in Warsaw treating the last of the French soldiers returning from the front. One night, a nun appears at the clinic, begging Mathilde to follow her back to the convent on urgent business. What Mathilde finds there is shocking: a holy sister about to give birth.
As Mathilde enters the sisters’ fiercely private world, secrets rise to the surface, and modernism and science clash with faith and tradition. The nuns go about their strict daily rituals, but inside the convent’s chilly stone walls, echoing with their melancholic chants, a dangerous revolution is taking place. [Synopsis courtesy of Sundance Film Festival]
As a house descends into mourning, mirrors draped in black crepe, a young French woman arrives from the mainland by ferry, blissfully unaware of the events that are about to take over her life. Jeanne (Lou de Laâge) is the girlfriend of the son of the family matriarch, Anna (Juliette Binoche), who has never met Jeanne and is surprised by her visit. Anna’s son, Giuseppe, is not there; Jeanne calls his cellphone and leaves numerous messages. As Anna and Jeanne await Giuseppe’s arrival, they slowly begin to form a friendship. Jeanne, confused and a little mystified at first, gradually gives in to the charms of the island. She swims in the sea and makes friends, while Anna, watched over by a long-time family friend, grows closer to this unexpected guest. [Synopsis courtesy of TIFF]
Charlie is seventeen and bored. Her estranged parents are too caught up in their own drama to pay much attention to her. School holds no surprises either and Charlie grows tired of her staid friends. Enter Sarah, a hip new transfer student who brings with her an alluring air of boldness and danger. The two girls form an instant connection. Sarah brings the excitement Charlie so desperately seeks, and Charlie is a stable influence on the wild child. Through shared secrets, love interests and holiday getaways, their relationship deepens to levels of unspoken intimacy, which eventually leads to jealousy and unrealistic expectations, and the teens soon find themselves on a trajectory toward a jarring outcome.