God Straightens Legs

God Straightens Legs

Tuesday, May 8, 2018 - 8:45pm
Thursday, May 10, 2018 - 2:30pm
Joële Walinga | 
Canada |
 2018 | 
70 minutes

On the surface of Joële Walinga’s film things appear normal—the sky is blue, the clouds are fluffy, and the grass is carefully manicured in the generic townhouse complex where a woman named Renée is waiting for a miracle. As the television blares in Renée’s bedroom, tuned either to televangelist Joseph Prince or the “eezee-listening” channel, a growing sense of unease begins to creep in. Hairline fractures reveal themselves in stilted conversation about the nature of divinity and human frailty, and the acid blue sky and verdant lawn takes on a different cast.

What is truly at stake is the relationship between the filmmaker and her subject, who also happens to be her mother. As Renée waits for divine intervention to cure her breast cancer, her daughter is busy with more earthly details: providing her mother with the bedroom of her dreams that includes a huge headboard, a vase of white roses with baby’s breath, and movers dressed in matching blue t-shirts to assemble it all. God Straightens Legs is a film about details, and the way that they embed inside of us during moments of terrible grief and sadness. The emotion that runs underneath, like an underground river, rises up, and clings to the mundane, investing it with a curious and irrevocable form of grace, that is, in itself, miraculous. -DW


Joële Walinga

Joële Walinga is a Toronto-based visual artist and filmmaker, who studied intermedia and film at NSCAD University and Concordia University. Her work has been shown at the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Khyber Centre for the Arts, Narwhal Contemporary, Xpace Cultural Centre, the Roundtable Residency, Wendy's Subway, and has been featured in Canadian Art, CBC Arts, Daily VICE, Art Matters, The Coast, and CANADALAND's The Imposter.