Directed by Thierry Demaizière & Alban Teurlai • Documentary • 2021 • 92 minutes
Lourdes is a beautiful mountainous village in the foothills of the French Pyrenees that went from a sleepy scenic town to a sacred wonder in 1858, when a 14-year-old peasant girl claimed to have seen the Virgin Mary. Today, the town is second only to Paris in the number of annual visitors, it is part venerated shrine, part Disneyland. Vast processions of people seeking a miracle fuel a small army of care-givers who accompany them. These pilgrims are a surprising cross-section of humanity: accident victims, the terminally ill, an overweight and bullied teenager, a contingent of aging Paris prostitutes. LOURDES is an insightful meditation on the human capacity for empathy and hope, and the mystery of religious faith in the face of profound tribulation.