Lesbian nun drama ‘Benedetta’ shines in Cannes: ‘You have never seen a movie quite like this’
VALERY HACHE/AFP/TNS

An erotic lesbian nun drama by the director of “Basic Instinct,” “Showgirls” and “Elle” premiered at the Cannes Film Festival on Friday night to great fanfare — and viewers can’t quite find the words to describe the experience. “Benedetta,” Paul Verhoeven’s latest sure-to-shock cinematic effort, stunned viewers after it debuted on the fourth night of the 74th edition of the prestigious festival. The period drama — loosely based on the 1986 nonfiction book “Immodest Acts: The Life of a Lesbian Nun in Renaissance Italy,” by Judith C. Brown — centers on the steamy relationship between two nuns in...