Lourdes, a picturesque country town at the base of the magnificent French Pyrenees, and a place of miracles, is a magnet for 6 million visitors each year from across the globe. Ballyfermot, Ireland, 1960: A hilariously hard-knocks community in outer Dublin that marches to its own beat – frenzied, fast and loose – and yet also deeply soulful; rooted in traditions of loyalty, faith and togetherness. It’s a thriving community in a constant uphill battle to live as fully as possible, on very little. And the opportunity to rise above one’s daily struggles is frankly a pipe dream, especially for women. There’s just one tantalising dream for the women of Ballyfermot to taste freedom and escape the gauntlet of domestic life: to win a pilgrimage to the sacred French town of Lourdes, and all for free. And with a little benevolent interference from their cheeky and rebellious priest, close friends LILY, EILEEN, DOLLY and SHEILA are the ‘lucky’ few to win this ticket of a lifetime at their riotous local raffle night.
Having never even left Dublin – let alone Ireland – the journey provides our heroines the chance to let their hair down, celebrate life and delight in some sweet independence. But it’s not all just a ‘jolly’: the women have a very important role to play when they arrive in Lourdes – to act as ‘pushers’ for the seriously ill and disabled pilgrims, there to bathe in the town’s healing springs. And it’s also a chance to reflect on their own lives, with each of the women in search of their own personal miracles. But when they are joined by CHRISSIE, recently returned from a decades-long exile in the USA, deep wounds from the past are re-opened, and bitter truths exposed. As they confront one another and embrace their past, these women realise that the miracle they have all been looking for is right in front of them: in the strength of their friendships and unshakeable togetherness.
Chris Curling, Joshua Maurer, Alixandre Witlin