A picaresque chronicle of Laura, a peasant maid, and Sebastian, the young orphan in her charge, against a backdrop of overflowing passion and revolutionary intrigue in Europe at the twilight of the 18th century.


Valeria Sarmiento


Carlos Saboga (scenario), Camilo Castelo Branco (novel)
7 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Lou de Laâge ... Laura / Lelia
Stanislas Merhar ... Rufo
Niels Schneider ... Marquis Lusault
Jenna Thiam ... Suzanne Monfort
David Caracol David Caracol ... Calabrais
Fleur Fitoussi Fleur Fitoussi ... Gervaise
Tiago Varela da Silva Tiago Varela da Silva ... Sebastian
Vasco Varela da Silva Vasco Varela da Silva ... Sebastian
Victoria Guerra ... Marie Antoinette
Joana Ribeiro ... Charlotte Corday
Catarina Wallenstein ... Concettina
Grégoire Leprince-Ringuet ... Bonaparte
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Hugo Caroça Hugo Caroça ... Laquais Monfort
François Deblock François Deblock ... Prince de Parma
Susie Filipe Susie Filipe


THE BLACK BOOK OF FATHER DINIS explores the tumultuous lives of Laura (Lou de Laâge), a peasant maid, and Sebastian (Vasco Varela da Silva), the young orphan in her charge, against a backdrop of overflowing passion and revolutionary intrigue in Europe at the twilight of the 18th century. An unlikely adventure yarn that strides the continent, from Rome and Venice to London and Paris, with whispers of conspiracies from the clergy, the military, and the gentry, this sumptuous period piece ponders the intertwined nature of fate, desire, and duty. Conceived by director Valeria Sarmiento as an appendix to the expansive literary maze of her late partner Raul Ruiz's landmark MYSTERIES OF LISBON, this picaresque chronicle both enriches the earlier work and stands on its own as a grand meditation of the stories we construct about ourselves.

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Drama | History | Romance


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Spun-off from Mysteries of Lisbon (2011) See more »

User Reviews

What could have been...
30 October 2018 | by jramalhoSee all my reviews

A well produced mystery period piece that spans important events (The French Revolution, the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte), the film is tripped by its barely coherent global narrative linking some good scenes. A viewer has to ask what the larger point is, and is left with abundant head scratching moments. On the other hand, this is also a good example of how making a mystery too mysterious (even though it might not really matter) can backfire.

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Portugal | France



Release Date:

8 December 2020 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Black Book of Father Dinis See more »

Filming Locations:

Lisbon, Portugal


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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