Malgorzata Szumowska’s lyrical, obscure drama about a closeted gay priest is a dignified plea for love and tolerance. Father Adam (Andrzej Chyra) who has freshly transferred from Warsaw to a rural Polish parish, commands the respect of the young male tearaways in his charge. He oozes spiritual authority but is also a dude – he drinks, smokes and even listens to Band of Horses. But when the enigmatic Lukasz (Mateusz Kosciukiewicz) appears, Adam falls in love and is forced to dance with his demons (literally, in one memorable scene). As the community grows suspicious things inevitably fall apart.
Szumowska’s visually distinctive film is light on its feet and aided by wonderfully naturalistic performances. When Lukasz disappears in a cornfield, Adam must enter into a game of hide and seek to find him. The ensuing volley of ape-like grunts is playful, carnal and shot through with yearning. It sets in motion a melancholic strain that lures the film towards its climax. If the set-up seems a little generic in places, it’s the film’s sensitivity to tone and nuance that rescues it from lapsing into cliché.