“Wonder” is an Irish drama with thriller elements that managed to win the favor of viewers around the world. Film director Sebastian Lelio tried to convey the era of the mid-19th century as accurately as possible. The professional cast, led by the charming Florence Pugh, also made a lot of efforts to make the film really interesting.
What is the movie The Wonder about?
The action takes place in 1862. The plot centers on a charming young woman named Elizabeth “Lib” Wright, who is an experienced nurse. A few years ago, the heroine experienced a personal tragedy, losing her only daughter, which forever changed the girl’s life. One day, a young nurse working in the Crimean War is sent to the Irish countryside to care for a girl named Anna O’Donnell who deliberately refuses to eat.
The heroine cooperates with a nun who is no less interested in a strange girl who eats “manna from heaven” than Elizabeth. By joining forces, young women are required to report their observations to the Council, which consists of influential representatives of the local community. However, not all locals are happy to see a very curious stranger. The heroine learns about the death of Anna’s brother, whom the doctors could not diagnose. The ward herself looks very healthy, despite the refusal of food.
Fate brings Elizabeth with an attractive man named William Byrno, whose family survived the difficult times of the Great Famine. The young man works for a local newspaper called The Daily Telegraph. I instruct the hero to write an article about a strange girl, whom the young man himself considers an ordinary pretender.
One early morning, Elizabeth becomes an unwitting witness to a strange scene when Anna’s own mother kisses her daughter on the lips. The young nurse begins to suspect that perhaps this is how the woman passes the food to her daughter. Elizabeth tells William about her observations, with whom the beauty develops a reverent relationship.
It is also alarming that Anna, staying away from her family, begins to lose strength and faint. Under pressure, Wonder Girl decides to tell the shocking truth about herself and her family. The heroine admits that fasting is a way to save the soul of her dead brother, who regularly raped the girl in her childhood. Anna considers her brother’s illness and death to be God’s punishment. To survive without food for a long time, the girl really helped her own mother.
Elizabeth informs the Council that she managed to find out, but no one wants to believe the words of the heroine, especially since the words of Lib differ from the opinion of the nun. Anna herself continues to adhere to the version that she feeds on “manna from heaven.” Meanwhile, the mother of an unusual teenager, realizing that the secret may soon be revealed, decides to stop feeding her daughter, which may threaten the girl’s imminent death.
Elizabeth and William will have to try hard to save the unfortunate girl from the clutches of cruel relatives. A nurse kidnaps an exhausted Anna while the heroine’s family is at Mass. The girl manages to feed the unfortunate woman, thereby saving her from starvation and naming her after her dead daughter. Meanwhile, a fire breaks out at O’Donnell’s house. The fire completely destroys the family estate, everyone believes Anna died in the fire.
Lieb informs the council that the girl died a natural death, and the fire is just an accident. However, the Council does not believe the heroine and decides to fire the woman, since the body of the deceased girl was not found. Elizabeth is happy with this end of events, and together with her new daughter and beloved man, she goes by ship to Sydney in search of a new, happy life.
The meaning of the film “The Wonder”
The quirky historical drama titled “The Wonder” tells the story of Anna, an 11-year-old Irish girl who reportedly stops eating but remains miraculously alive and well – she says she survives on “manna from heaven.” Nurse Elizabeth (Lib) is sent to watch Anna to see if the girl is really surviving without food or water.
Film director Sebastian Lelio takes an innovative approach to the story of a teenage girl who decides to starve because of religious mores and beliefs, hiding behind the imaginary help of a deceased brother who caused a lot of trouble to the heroine in his lifetime.
This film is about the clash between reason and extraordinary thinking, science and extreme religiosity, between spiritual and intellectual elasticity and fanaticism. A girl named Anna faced traumatic events in her deep childhood, therefore, having matured, she decides to refuse food, not without the participation of her religious mother.
The girl’s mother holds her daughter responsible for her brother’s death and leads Anna to believe that by sacrificing her own life (through fasting), she can save her brother from eternal damnation. And, as you know, a child is a follower, he is unquestioningly ready to trust people, especially a close person whom he loves.
Explanation of the ending of the film “The Wonder”
Initially skeptical, Elizabeth expects to be able to solve the mystery of the starving miracle girl quickly enough, however, this task turned out to be very difficult. In one scene, Lib can be seen trying to force-feed Anna, in desperation putting a feeding tube in her mouth before pulling it out, horrified by his own actions.
It’s not until Elizabeth gives up her desire to expose the deception and upstages her own rigid beliefs by accepting Anna’s version of reality that the O’Donnell family secrets are unexpectedly revealed. As it turns out, Anna does not eat “manna from heaven”, but actually receives food when her own mother kisses her daughter.
The reasons for refusing to eat are devastating: Anna mourns her dead brother, who, as the girl explains, gave her a “double love” when she was nine years old – a love given to her sister and wife at the same time. Sacrificing herself, the naive Anna hopes to beg for her brother’s transition from purgatory to paradise, and in such a strange decision, the child is supported by her own mother, who has long been “moved by her mind”, believing that her children will be much better off in heaven.
Does Anna really die at the end of The Wonder movie? No, Lib still manages to escape with the child, but it was not easy to do so. In an attempt to end secret feeding, Elizabeth separates Anna from her parents. But, unfortunately, this only leads to the fact that Anna’s condition worsens rapidly under her supervision. The girl’s mother lives by her beliefs, which are far from reasonable, and the religious society does not want to help the dying child at all, it is easier for them to consider the girl a miracle than to see a life-threatening problem.
Elizabeth becomes the only person interested in saving the child. Despite the fact that the woman had to go to the trick to save Anna from imminent, starvation death, however, the heroine’s plan turns out to be very successful and saving for the teenager.