Saturday, February 07, 2009

Watching for... MARY (2005, Abel Fererra)

"Abel Ferrara’s 15th feature, MARY, which had its premiere at Venice in 2005, is only now having a run in New York. (It opens on Friday Oct 10 at Anthology Film Archives.) It revolves around a film within the film — in this case a biblical indie called THIS IS MY BLOOD. The leading lady (Juliette Binoche) is so shaken by playing Mary Magdalene that she decamps for Jerusalem. Back in New York a television talk show host (Forest Whitaker) finds himself struggling with his faith as he prepares to interview the Jesus movie’s brash director and star (Matthew Modine, in a role that inevitably calls to mind Mel Gibson but also contains strong elements of the freewheeling Mr. Ferrara). MARY is simply the most direct expression of spiritual crisis in a filmography riven with Catholic notions of guilt and redemption. When Ferrara started working on MARY — 'living within three blocks of the Vatican,' he noted — he revisited the Bible and this time approached it 'as a revolutionary tome."' Oct 10 2008, NY Times

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