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The Nun's Story (1959) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot Summary

  • In 1930, in Belgium, Gabrielle van der Mal is the stubborn daughter of the prominent surgeon Dr. Pascin Van Der Mal that decides to leave her the upper-class family to enter to a convent, expecting to work as nun in Congo with tropical diseases. She says good-bye to her sisters Louise and Marie; to her brother Pierre; and to her beloved father, and subjects herself to the stringent rules of the retrograde institution, including interior silent and excessive humbleness and humiliation. After a long period working in a mental institution, Gaby is finally assigned to go to Congo, where she works with the Atheist and cynical, but brilliant, Dr. Fortunati. Sister Luke proves to be very efficient nurse and assistant, and Dr. Fortunati miraculous heals her tuberculosis. Years later, she is ordered to return to Belgium and when her motherland is invaded by the Germans, she learns that her beloved father was murdered by the enemy while he was helping wounded members of the resistance. Sister Luke finally decides to leave the religious life since she is not able to feel neutral against the invaders of her country.

    - Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Gabrielle Van Der Mal gave up everything to become a nun. But her faith and her vows are forever being tested: first in the missionary Congo hospital where she assists the brilliant and handsome Dr. Fortunati and then at the mother house in France when World War II has broken out and the nuns are forbidden by the order to take sides.

    - Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>
  • In 1930, young Gabrielle Van der Mal enters a convent in her native Belgium to become a nun. Almost immediately she has difficulty adjusting to the cloistered life, and its vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. She doubts her own ability, even as she takes her final vows. Gabrielle, now called Sister Luke, excels in her medical studies and dreams of serving in the Belgian Congo. When she is asked by the Reverend Mother to fail her exams on purpose to show humility, she cannot bring herself to do so. However, despite her excellent score she is not sent to the Congo, but to a sanitarium in Brussels.

    - Written by filmfactsman
  • After leaving a wealthy Belgian family to become a nun, Sister Luke struggles with her devotion to her vows during crisis, disappointment, and World War II.

    - Written by Jonathan Hayward

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