Beyond the Walls

Poster for Beyond the Walls

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This 1985 Spanish film reveals one of the many terrible aspects of 16th century Spain, still plagued by the radical Christian Inquisition, one of a plethora of difficulties Spaniards faced at the time. Spanish super star Carmen Maura plays a nun who agrees to a selfless scam, a fake stigmata, only to avoid separation from her lover, another nun. It's a serious and passionate work, highlighting the theme of outspoken women-against-repression, seen in other good gay and lesbian films. This is not a lesbian "Nun sense" or another "Dark Habits" (by Almodovar, which also starred Carmen Maura, and also set in a Spanish convent, with some lesbian nuns). Perhaps, best of all, 'Extramuros' is realistic and frank. It isn't shy about its characters' sexuality. Their sexuality, and the film as a whole are genuine.

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Spanish / 118 min / 1985

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