Forbidden Wedding | Chicago Reader

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Beautifully constructed by Flavia Fontes, this 2001 documentary opens with the Catholic Church refusing to sanction the planned wedding of a paraplegic to his caregiver, purportedly because canon law requires sexual consummation (Hedir, the paraplegic, has been impotent since age 15, when he was shot). The format seems unexceptional—stills and interviews are interspersed with the duo living their lives—but Fontes unfolds the story with artistry and care, gradually introducing wider and more diverse perspectives. In one graphic scene Hedir's pretty fiancee bathes his scarred torso, distended belly, and atrophied legs; when the fiancee's declaration of sincerity is placed immediately afterward, the couple's genuine affection contrasts vividly with a church that, as one woman says, “is only thinking about sex.” 56 min.

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