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Right from the start, Italian short film director Piero Messina lets us know that we are in sacred embrace of Catholicism. Days before Easter, the ritual unfolds. Mother Mary mourning the loss of her son. Her head bowed close to his nailed feet. And then we see Anna (Juliette Binoche) captured in her own grief, with sound remixing and visual editing that accentuates the sense of mourning as a kind of death, being locked away from light and life. Messina builds tension, creating in the human horror of loss into something spiritually menacing. Into this grave situation comes Jeanne (Lou de Laâge), the girlfriend of Anna’s recently deceased son, who has no idea what has happened. She accepted his invitation to celebrate Easter with his family, and now Anna withholds her son’s death from Jeanne, stringing the young girl, and us, along, while waiting for the right moment to tell her the truth. L’Attesa (The Wait) perfectly approximates the lead-up to a resurrection of sorts that is both horrific and beautiful. – tts (R) CityBeat grade: A