Monthly Screenings
Leon Morin, Priest
Dir.: Jean-Pierre Melville | 117 minutes

Leon Morin, Priest

France, Italy 1961 | 117 minutes | French, English | Hebrew, English subtitles

A small French village during the Nazi occupation. Barny, a young war widow and mother of a child, is an anti-religion, Marxist. One morning, out of sheer boredom, she arrives at the church confessional. She is surprised to find that the priest is a warm, accessible young man. The love she feels for him as their friendship develops, leads her to try and coerce him into breaking his vows. Against the background of wartime France, Melville creates a fascinating parallel between oppression and occupation, and repressed sexuality and romance. His skilfully devised dialogues are dramatically enhanced by brilliant lighting, Henri Decaë’s naturalistic cinematography, and spectacular performances by Jean-Paul Belmondo and Emmanuelle Riva.