Ostrov (The Island)
2006, 112 minutes
12:30 - 3:00, ticket required
Winner of the Nika Award (Russian Academy of Film Artrs) and the Golden Eagle Award (China TV), this film closed the Venice Film Festival. Pyotr Mamanov, rock musician, songwriter and actor, plays Anatoly, a “fool for Christ” monk at a remote monastery on the White Sea following World War II. Director Pavel Lungin said of the guilt-ridden, enigmatic and wonderworking central character, “He was blessed in the sense that he is an exposed nerve, which connects to the pains of this world.” Screenwriter Dmitry Sobolev added: "When a person asks God for something, he is often wrong because God has a better understanding of what a person needs at that moment.” Patriarch of Moscow Alexei II praised Ostrov for its profound depiction of faith and monastic life, calling it a “vivid example of an effort to take a Christian approach to culture.”
Rotten Tomato Audience Score 81%.
Parallel Love: The Story of a Band Called Luxury
Documentary 2021, 100 minutes
10:30 - 12:00 & 3:00 - 4:30, ticket required
Starring Lee Bozeman, Matt Hinton, and Glenn Black, this film follows punk musicians from small-town Georgia who eventually became Orthodox Christian priests. Critics remember their band, Luxury, for its unique blend of aggressive post punk musical attack and deeply melodic vocals. Despite being labeled “Christian musicians,” they often were compared to Fugazi and The Smiths. Following the release of their first record, the band suffered a devastating touring wreck that sidelined them musically while causing them to confront deeper issues. They continued to make music together, even after three members of the band became Eastern Orthodox priests. Through interviews and archival footage, Parallel Love tells Luxury’s story and documents the making of a new record, now as priests.
Rotten Tomato 95%
Icon: Through the Hand of God
Documentary, 2008, 60 minutes
Playing in the Gallery
Director Teddy Grouya follows Titiana Popa, iconographer and wife of a Romanian Orthodox Priest, as she travels to her hometown in Romania to create stunningly beautiful spiritual portraits. The film documents the struggle to create, and the depth of spiritual meaning that is a hallmark of the iconographer’s art. Set against the backdrop of present day Romania, Popa's work finds a home in hidden monasteries as monks and clergy chant, and the Constanta Men's Choir performs Byzantine music. Titiana is a festival exhibitor, and this documentary is part of her exhibit.