The Nun's Story Film Review
Note: This is another review from college that I have self-edited from how it was submitted originally.
I enjoyed the idea that Audrey Hepburn played Marie-Louis Habets, who was the subject of the film, and Habets took care of her. Finally, I might watch this movie again and then decide whether to add it to my collection.
The Nun’s Story is both great as well as agonizing in the way the story of Sister Luke is told. I found it to be agonizing in terms of the slow tempo of the story. It was simply a character study and there was no real development of any other characters. There was no peering into the soul of another character to see the depth any of the other nuns. So, it didn’t work as well as A Man for All Seasons, which was also directed by Fred Zinnemann. However it is great because, since each actress was given the chance to train in an actual nunnery we as an audience were able to see the real day-to-day life of a nun, which ended up being more interesting than I thought it would.
The ending was perfect in its absence of music. It allowed a good kind of jarring aspect to the door opening and Audrey Hepburn walking out. It was almost a William Wyler kind of moment that made the words “The End” appearing on screen really unnecessary.
A scene that stood out to me was the scene where the Archangel attacks Sister Luke. Until that moment, there had been no violence in the film. It was expected once the Archangel was introduced, but what was unexpected was the savagery of it. I briefly thought that Sister Luke was going to be raped by the Archangel.
Another scene that stood out to me involved the nun killed in the Congo. As soon as the nun was killed I thought there was going to be some revolution or mass killing. Also I believed that Sister Luke and some of the other sisters were barely going to escape with their lives. I was surprised when instead of that happening, the killer was subdued and it was revealed it was just one crazed individual who was following the witch doctor’s orders.
A scene that utterly shocked me involved the island of the lepers. I honestly was not expecting such an accurate portrayal of a leper colony. What shocked me even more was that Sister Luke was not even going to have a chance to help any of them because the doctor had already succumbed to leprosy.