The Frida Cinema

Orange County's Year-Round Film Festival


Succumb to the sensual tension of Benedetta, a sexually-charged biographical drama from the one and only Paul Verhoeven.

Based on the nonfiction book Immodest Acts: The Life of a Lesbian Nun in Renaissance Italy, the movie tells the story of Benedetta Carlini. A nun living in a convent in 17th-century Italy, Benedetta tries to live up to the expectations of her faith when another nun catches her eye. The two become increasingly involved with each other, and before long trouble ensues.

Competing for the Palme d’Or at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, Benedetta is a striking new offering from the director of Basic Instinct.


“Benedetta is a substantial, sophisticated, yet briskly paced and always highly entertaining drama, which balances quiet scenes of shrewd backroom politicking with lurid scenes of wild religious madness.” – Nicholas Barber,

Verhoeven once again pushes all the buttons that will titillate, provoke, excite, offend and — a quality he’s maintained throughout the decades — mix impudent and outrageous conceits with serious smarts.” – Todd McCarthy, Deadline Hollywood Daily

“Director Paul Verhoeven mixes same sex sexuality, religious constraints, substantive faith under a 17th century nunnery with laughs and proper critique.” – Murjani Rawls, Substream Magazine