With his stunning debut feature, the risk-taking auteur Bruno Dumont immediately established his reputation as both a spiritual heir to Robert Bresson and an uncompromising iconoclast on the cutting edge of French cinema. Blending unflinching realism with moments of startling, light-filled beauty, La vie de JÃ©sus
finds unexpected philosophical richness in the quotidian, small-town existence of Freddy (nonprofessional David Douche in a revelatory, one-off performance), an aimless young man with epilepsy who, in his childlike simplicity, embodies both great tenderness and terrifying brutality. Leaving the filmâs cryptic title tantalizingly open to interpretation, Dumont dares viewers to see the divine in a seemingly dead-end world.
- New interview with Bruno Dumont
- Conversation between Bruno Dumont and critic Philippe Rouyer from 2014
- Excerpts from two 1997 episodes of the French television program Le cercle de minuit
- An essay by critic Nicholas Elliott