Directed by Laura Bispuri
Starring Alba Rohrwacher, Emily Ferratello, Lars Eidinger
Distributor: Strand Releasing
Hana Doda, still a girl, escapes from her destiny of being a wife and a servant, a future imposed on women in the harsh mountains of Albania. Following his uncle’s guide, she appeals to the old law of the Kanun, which gives women, taking an oath of eternal virginity, the chance to embrace a rifle and live free as men. For everybody Hana becomes Mark, a “sworn virgin”.
But something alive pulses and frets under these new clothes. Her choice becomes her prison and those immense mountains seem so narrow now. Mark decides to set out on journey, too long put off. She leaves her land and arrives in Italy, where a new journey begins; a continuous and subtle path, crossing the line of two far away and different worlds: Albania and Italy, past and present, masculine and feminine.
Slowly Mark discovers her body again. She experiences the vertigo of touching other bodies and she finds caring, loving people life had denied her. She opens up to an unexpected and prohibited love’s chance.
Mark rediscovers Hana, finally piecing back together the two souls that for years have lived inside her body. She is reborn as a new, free and complete creature.
“Bispuri and co-writer Francesca Manieri don’t pass explicit judgment on a custom born out of more problematically ingrained sexism; the script’s perspective is more anthropological than political” -Guy Lodge, Variety
“Cutting between present, childhood, and recent past, Bispuri constructs a subtle, richly emotional collage”
-Diana Clarke, Village Voice