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La religieuse (French Edition) Kindle Edition
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
This book is in the public domain and the Kindle edition is free. I downloaded that but decided I wanted a physical copy. What I got is not actually a book formatted for publication, but the text of the novel haphazardly printed in a teeny tiny font. It does not have the introduction (15ish pages in the Kindle edition) or any publication history. It does not have page numbers. It looks like someone copied their college paper into a document and ran it off at Kinkos. Throw a glossy cover on it with a few words in Comic Sans on the outside and call it a published book, I guess.
The font is TINY. I opened up the nearest paperback to me and held a page from this book up to it. The print in this is half the size. I normally read books easily without glasses, although I have some. I put on reading glasses and still it is a struggle to discern words, and it's nearly impossible in any normal lounging around reading for pleasure position.
It never occurred to me to research the actual formatting of a novel before, but apparently that is now a thing to look out for.
"The Nun" (2013 release from France; original title "La Religieuse"; 114 min.) brings the story of Suzanne, a 16 year old girl, growing up in the late 18th century. Suzanne has 2 older sisters who each have their eyes set already on getting married. Alas, for Suzanne, her modest-to-do parents couldn't possibly afford to marry out three daughters, so Suzanne is sent to a monastery, with the hope of becoming a nun. Once at the monastery, Suzanne is overcome with doubts about taking the final oath to become a nun. After much back-and-forth, Suzanne gives in and becomes a nun. However, disaster strikes when "mother nun", the head of the monastery, passes away (under apparently dubious circumstances) and the new "mother nun" reigns with terror over the sisters. At that point we are not even halfway into the movie, and to give away more of the plot would ruin your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Several comments: first and foremost, this is a very sober and restrained movie, which makes for a very intense and not always easy viewing experience. The movie, which is based on the book by Denis Diderot, does an excellent job in putting you, as if it were, right in the middle of the monastery and letting you experience how these nuns live their modest lives on a day-to-day basis. There is almost no music in the movie to speak of, which only re-emphasizes the sparse environment of the movie. The acting performances are ace throughout, none more so than Pauline Etienne as the young woman Suzanne, as she brings the doubts and the desperation experienced by Suzanne with a chilling effect. Of course Isabelle Huppert is great too as one of the "mother nuns".
The screening where I saw this at in Belgium was very well attended, and I could see this movie possibly becoming a hit in art-house theatres here in the US. Bottom line: if you are in the mood for a top-notch foreign movie that is miles away from your standard Hollywood fare, you cannot go wrong with this. "The Nun" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!