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Teresa de Jesus

by Critical Commons Manager

Text commentary written by Sherry Velasco

The 1962 film adaptation of St. Teresa of Avila’s life includes a modified version of the famous transverberation episode from chapter 29 of the sixteenth-century saint’s autobiography. Unlike the original text (which depicts a cherubim penetrating the nun’s heart with a blazing spear) Orduña’s film merely suggests the iconic vision by revealing a bolt of light from a large crucifix passing through the saint’s heart. The transverberation is implied when the actress (in a medium long shot) falls back slightly while kneeling during prayer. Unlike other film versions, this scene avoids any close-up shots. One wonders whether this Franco dictatorship-era film foregoes more specific references to the transverberation due to a fear of the potential sensuality of the scene.

Teresa de Jesús (1962; Dir. Juan de Orduña)

A Franco-era adaptation of St. Teresa of Avila’s life includes a modified version of the famous transverberation episode.

from Teresa de Jesús (1962)
Creator: Juan de Orduña
Distributor: Agrupa Films Cooperativa Cinematográfica
Posted by Sherry Velasco
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