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By Merle Bertrand | February 29, 2000

The two guys fishing on a lake don’t think much of it when one of them snags something big and heavy. Probably a tree stump, you can almost hear them thinking. (No one says a word throughout this eerie film.) Happens all the time. You’d think, however, that their veneer of calm would have shattered once they saw that what they’d snagged was not a submerged hunk of driftwood after all, but the body of Jesus Christ. Nonplussed, they recover the body, complete with its crown of thorns, and return it to its rightful place: an empty crucifix in a nearby church. I’m sure there are a plethora of religious subtexts in Tim Kerns’ “Ripple,” other than its nod to the serenity of faith, that have completely flown over my head. Even without picking up on these metaphors, however, this somber and moody film is still oddly affecting in its simplicity and quiet dignity.

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