The Journey with Jesus: Film Reviews
Film Reviews by Dan Clendenin
Of Gods and Men (2010) — France
Based upon a true story, Of Gods and Men tells the story of eight French monks who live their community life of liturgy, poverty, humility, and love in a remote Algerian village. They garden, tend bees, sell their honey in the local market, and offer rudimentary medical care to everyone who needs it. The Muslim villagers love them, and invite them to their own parties: "You are the branch on which we stand," says one woman. When Muslim fundamentalists murder a little girl, and then some Croatian workers, the government insists upon protecting the monks with military might. They refuse, on principle. Then the jihadists come and want their medicine, which the monks don't refuse. With their lives clearly endangered by both the government and the jihadists, they must decide whether to stay or to leave, and why. Of Gods and Men won the Grand Jury Prize at Cannes, and was nominated for 11 Césars (the French equivalent of the Oscars). In French with English subtitles.