The Films At Sundance Exploring Religion

January 18, 2011

(RNS) Following is a brief synopsis of the major films dealing with faith, religion or spirituality at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival:

"Abraxas" -- A depressed Buddhist monk tries to reconnect with his punk rock past.

"The Catechism Cataclysm" -- A young priest who's lost touch with his flock reconnects with a high school acquaintance for a canoe trip.

"Higher Ground" -- Vera Farmiga, the Oscar-nominated actress from "Up In The Air," directs and stars in this movie about a woman seeking answers from a fundamentalist Christian community.

"Kinyarwanda" -- The first dramatic feature film produced by Rwandans intertwines six accounts of survival during the Rwandan genocide, including stories about a priest and an imam.

"The Ledge" -- An atheist says he must leap off a building by noon in a thriller that also examines the life of a woman seeking spiritual redemption.

"Lost Kisses" -- Residents in a Sicilian community suspect a 13-year-old girl has a miraculous vision.

"Martha Marcy May Marlene" -- A woman who fled a dangerous cult tries to return to a life of normalcy.

"Position Among The Stars" -- The final installment of a documentary trilogy that follows the life of a Christian matriarch living with her Muslim sons in Jakarta, Indonesia.

"The Redemption of General Butt Naked" -- A former Liberian warlord who's responsible for the murder of thousands seeks salvation and forgiveness as an evangelical preacher in this documentary.

"Red State" -- Kevin Smith, who caused controversy with his scathing comedy "Dogma," tries out horror with this film about dangerous Christian fundamentalists.

"Salvation Boulevard" -- George Ratliff, director of the documentary "Hell House" about a church-run haunted house, directs this satire of megachurch culture. Starring Pierce Brosnan, Greg Kinnear, Jennifer Connelly, Marisa Tomei and Ed Harris.

"Tyrannosaur" -- Actor Paddy Considine ("In America") makes his directorial debut with this story of a self-destructive man who seeks redemption with help from a Christian charity worker.