Water

In theaters.

“What if your conscience conflicts with your faith?” The agony in the Hindu woman’s voice as she poses that question to her guru is heartbreaking, and for anyone who takes his or her faith seriously enough to wrestle with it, her pain is immediately recognizable. Water might be about people in very specific circumstances — Hindu widows exiled to a crumbling home in 1930s India — but the question at its heart is universal. Writer-director Deepa Mehta’s film is lyrical and beautifully shot, but the universality of its theme and the quiet profundity of Mehta’s examination of it make Water much more than a pretty picture postcard. Unsettling and powerful, Water lingers in the mind long after the screen goes dark.