the little hours movie review – jeff baena

The Little Hours by Jeff Baena is my favourite movie from 2017 so far – and we’re already half way through the year. The story is based on – I suspect having seen the movie that it might be ‘loosely based on’? – the 14th century Italian masterpiece, The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio. The action takes place in and around a small convent, and focuses on the adventures of a group of nuns and the male characters they interact with – the father of the convent, the bishop and the handyman. It’s a sort of ‘Confessions of ..’ romp, but much much funnier and better made than the lame 1970s versions.

The nuns are like a Russian punk band version of nuns – they drink, they swear (extensively!), they lie, they dream of escape, they have sex with the male characters, they have lesbian sex and they indulge in naked witchcraft orgies. One of them is even a Jew. Still, it’s all OK if they confess their sins to the father, played by the wonderful John C Reilly.

After beating up and driving one handyman away, the replacement handyman is advised to pretend to be deaf and mute in order to protect himself from the nuns, who, he is told ‘like to hunt in packs’. This handyman is young and good looking, and is soon seduced by several of the nuns before his ruse is rumbled.

I’m not sure that there are any deep messages in this movie, or themes to explore… but it is a very funny movie – at least on a par with 2016’s War on Everyone.

Our rating: 10/10 Just fabulous in every way.