A girl on the verge of adolescence has her world turned upside down in this comedy-drama from director and screenwriter Alice Rohrwacher. Twelve-year-old Marta (Yile Vianello) was born in the Southern Italian town of Calabria, but she has no clear memories of the place; when she was two, her family relocated to Switzerland, and her Italian heritage has never meant much to her. Marta has a lot of adjusting to do when she and her mom move back to a slightly shabby neighborhood in Calabria; not only does Marta feel like a misfit after being raised in a very different culture, she discovers that people in Calabria take Catholicism very seriously, while religion was never a significant matter in her household. Wanting to better fit in with her new friends, Marta begins attending mass and studying for her confirmation, but she finds much of the dogma puzzling and is constantly reminded that her learning curve is very different from her peers. Marta also becomes acquainted with Don Mario (Salvatore Cantalupo), the priest at the local church who also happens to be the village's rent collector. Hoping to win his favor, Marta tags along to help Don Mario pick up an ornate cross for an upcoming religious festival, but the day doesn't go smoothly for either of them. Corpo Celeste was an official selection at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.
by Mark Deming synopsis