In the Name Of… (2013)

In the Name Of...

★★★½

(directed by Małgorzata Szumowska, 2013)

As you may have noticed, I’ve been making a real effort to watch more world cinema recently, and Amazon obligingly recommended this award-winning Polish film, which tackles the dark no-man’s-land between faith and desire. Brooding and often bleak, it focuses on Adam (Andrzej Chyra), an energetic priest who has been posted to an out-of-the-way parish in the middle of the countryside. Blessed with a talent for dealing with troubled teenagers, he has set up a residential centre for young offenders, in whom he attempts to instil respect for faith, discipline and obedience. In parts it’s oddly disjointed, but the film lingers for its stark and unsentimental view of life in the countryside, as well as its steadily thickening brew of unspoken longing and confusion.

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