Ava and Gabriel | Chicago Reader

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A black painter trained in Holland arrives on the Dutch island of Curacao in the 1940s to execute a church mural, but his proposal to model his Virgin on a local mixed-race woman provokes crude theological debate as to whether Mary must be shown as white. Felix de Rooy's 1990 film is less a drama than a rambling and often nostalgic portrait of life on the island built of varied details, including the seduction of the painter by the governor's wife, episodes of gay sex, and a mother who beats her adult daughter. In Dutch and Papiamento with subtitles. 93 min.

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