Benedetta is undoubtedly going to be the most controversial movie of 2021
It is the latest movie from the director of Basic Instinct and Showgirls.
If you thought the furore around Promising Young Woman earlier this year was something, or the noise made when Joker hit the cinemas back in 2019 was loud, then prepare yourself for Benedetta.
Not since maybe The Passion Of The Christ has a movie seemed so primed for massive public discourse and we'd expect nothing less from director Paul Verhoeven, who has a CV that reads like a bullet point list of reaction-rousing releases: Basic Instinct, Showgirls, Total Recall, Robocop, Starship Troopers, to name but a few.
His most recent movie, 2016's Elle, also courted huge reactions, as it revolved around a businesswoman who begins playing a psychological game of cat and mouse with the man who raped her.
For his new movie, it will tell the semi-biographical tale set in the late 15th century. With a plague ravaging the land, Benedetta Carlini (Virginie Efira) joins the convent in Tuscany. Capable from an early age of performing miracles, Benedetta's impact on the lives of others in the community is momentous, but she soon begins to suffers from disturbing religious and erotic visions.
She is comforted by a new arrival at the convent, Bartolomea (Daphne Patakia), and the relationship between the two women develops into a romantic love affair, which will see the church essentially turn on them.
The movie also stars Charlotte Rampling (45 Years) and Lambert Wilson (The Matrix Reloaded).
So between the plot threads of blasphemy, homophobia, religion and the disturbing crucification imagery... Yep, this is definitely going to get people talking and that is before we even get to the extremely NSFW sex stuff going on in the trailer below.
Benedetta is set to debut at the Cannes Film Festival this July, ahead of a full release in cinemas before the end of 2021.
Clip via Pathe