Synopsis by Bhob Stewart
Yves Angelo directed this slow-paced French drama adapted from the novel by Steinunn Sigurdardottir about two sisters -- high school literature instructor Alda (Emmanuelle Beart) and her older sister Olga (Sandrine Bonnaire). On an island, the sisters and Olga's 17-year-old daughter Sigga (Vahina Giocante) live in a former rectory adjacent to a cemetery where an old woman (Bulle Ogier) talks to herself. After school, while Sigga does her homework, the enigmatic Alda engages in some extracurricular exercises with married men (with Olga sometimes eavesdropping just outside her door). Polite shopkeeper Jakob (Andre Dussollier) makes visits to collect the variety of straw animals made by Olga. Time passes slowly as long-buried secrets are unearthed, but the pace picks up during a fantasy sequence. The dialogue-sparse film features a clip from Carl Dreyer's The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928). Shown at 1998 film fests (Venice, Toronto).
daughter, sister, secrets, promiscuity