The Brand New Testament

Dir: Jaco Van Dormael




As soon as you see the still of Catherine Deneuve in bed with a gorilla, you know this is going to be an interesting ride. Belgian visionary Jaco Van Dormael’s (Toto the HeroThe Eighth DayMr. Nobody) inventive, fantastical black comedy situates God in a drab flat in modern-day Brussels.

Petty and vindictive, this God giggles as he forces toast to land jam-side down and ensures whichever queue his chosen victim is in lasts the longest. He lives with his docile wife and their children, perceptive 10-year-old daughter Ea (an excellent performance from young actress Pili Groyne) and son “JC”, who together form a plan: they’ll acquire six new disciples and create a brand new testament. Their communications policy? A text message sent to everyone on earth to let them know.

Their random disciples’ stories range from the silly (Deneuve, who longs to bring a gorilla from the zoo to her bed) to the genuinely touching; including a young, ill boy who wants to spend his last days alive as a girl.

Flamboyant and defiantly outré, van Dormael’s film is a vastly entertaining religious satire, but one with room for humanity and optimism.

Booking Information

Release Date

25 March 2016

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