God Is Great (and I’m Not)

June 22, 2011 | By

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Sometimes, a spiritual search can be as hard as the search for the perfect boyfriend. Here’s a film that chronicles the quest for both.

The 2002 film God is Great (and I’m Not) stars Audrey Tatou, the star of Amelie, as a young French model named Michèle. Depressed, she plows through boyfriends and various modes of spirituality–at the beginning of the film, she carries Catholic prayer beads; she soon discards them in favor of Buddhist meditation.

When she meets François, a lapsed (and cynical) Jew, she’s more captivated by the religion than the man. She immerses herself in Judaism, nailing a mezuzah to François’ door, learning Hebrew, and driving both her mother and François crazy with her rigid Shabbat observance.

Her obsession overwhelms her relationship with François, and they’re soon on the rocks. But her new religious devotion doesn’t let go as easily: Even when the couple goes through tough spots, Michèle still lights Shabbat candles and says a prayer, in charmingly French-accented Hebrew, before every food she eats.

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