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St. Teresa of Avila

by Critical Commons Manager

Text commentary by Sherry Velasco

This eight-part post-Franco television mini-series includes the iconic vision of the transverberation but without portraying the actual episode (a small angel with enflamed arrow piercing Teresa’s heart). Instead, this scene begins with another nun who happens to overhear the suggestive moans of the saint through a closed door. When she opens the door she discovers Teresa in mid-ecstasy, collapsed on the floor experiencing the pain/pleasure of the famous vision. When the other nun rushes to her aid, Teresa then narrates the text from chapter 29 of her life story. The scene maintains a medium close-up shot framing both nuns accompanied by dramatic and somewhat ominous off-screen background music, as if contesting Teresa’s celebratory smile while recounting her mystical vision. Like the voyeuristic witness, we are not allowed to actually see the small angel penetrating the saint’s heart repeatedly with the long spear. The scene ends with a red fade-out.

St. Teresa of Avila (1983; Dir. Josefina Molina)

This eight-part post-Franco television mini-series includes the iconic vision of the transverberation but without portraying the actual episode (a small angel with enflamed arrow piercing Teresa’s heart).

from St. Teresa of Avila (1983)
Creator: Josefina Molina
Distributor: Televisión Española
Posted by Sherry Velasco
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