All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. An easy way of seeing how…
Au Hasard Balthazar
The sad life and death of Balthazar, a donkey, from an idyllic childhood surrounded by loving children, through adulthood as a downtrodden beast of burden. His life is paralleled with that of the girl who named him, and as she is humiliated by her sadistic lover, so he is beaten by his owner. But he finds a kind of peace when he is employed by an old miller who thinks he is a reincarnated saint.
Robert Bresson has an insane 7 films on the Sight and Sound list.
Now, I may or may not possess the Malick gene, the jury is still out, but having watched two Bressons now (this and Pickpocket) I'm almost certain I do not possess a Bresson gene.
Maybe...completely devoid of the Bresson gene.
This is, without a doubt, the main director that is so critically praised and universally loved and I cannot, for the life of me, understand why. To put it bluntly - these two films are shit. I know I'll catch some flack for that statement, but I stand by it wholeheartedly...for now. Maybe, down the road I'll come to see Au Hasard Balthazar in a new light.…
Please, please, please just read Matthew Ekstrom's review. I am far too teary to even think about writing anything about this film. Plus, I don't think that I could even write anything as perfect and beautiful as his review. 'Au Hasard Balthazar' is a truly powerful experience and one of the most beautiful films ever made. Now excuse me while I go cry my eyes out.
DonkeyHood! the life story of Balthazar the donkey and people around him. Masterfully directed by Robert Bresson (director of one of my favorite films ' A Man Escaped') This another beautifully shot masterpiece. Its not easy film to watch, its shows the lust, weakness, greed, cruelty and hope of humans, deals with life and death, which is very heartbreaking and unsettling. Most of the characters in this film are assholes, especially Gerard, this will put people off. The last image stays in your head.
A very slow, very moving take on the burden that is life, Bresson's classic assigns a good deal of its audiences' sympathies to the simple eyes of a donkey. In the hands of a great director he makes for a brilliant protagonist, and that's exactly what Bresson proves himself (this is my first of his). There's a particularly majestic scene that sees our hero exchanging glances with a series of caged circus animals; it's impossible to describe with words just how much it affects you. Bresson has the ability to imbue his scenes with remarkably underscored meaning, from the emotional intensity behind every glance to the many religious parallels the story draws. I'm not sure I was quite as open to it as I should have been—certainly a fault of my mood rather than the film—but the achievement here is undeniably stunning.
"Au Hasard Balthazar" explores the unfathomable cruelty of human existence and the cowardice that creates a failure to love. And yet at the same time, this film, which reveals everything I care to know of evil, seems to spring forth from a boundless well of empathy within its creator.
This is the work of a truly great artist, perhaps the great film artist. I cannot imagine watching it and coming away unchanged.
"Besides, he's a saint."
It's one thing to create something masterful and compelling from material that feels designed to entertain an audience, and I don't begrudge any filmmaker from doing it. I love the feeling when I read a premise and I can literally feel the excitement building inside me with each word, and by the time I am done reading even just a brief synopsis I am ready to hand over my money for a ticket instantly even if the release date is still years away.
It's just as fascinating to go backwards in time though, to explore cinema released decades before I was even born. These pictures were often times landmarks of the medium before I even took my first steps, and…
Un-beautified martyrdom, Schubert piece on piano and a donkey's braying overlay what is normally the diagetic non-music music of natural sounds in Bresson's minimal formalism. The narrative components seem similarly overlaid with references back to the world and culture that constructs the suffering and cruelty experience by the donkey and its owner.
Innocence of receiving the world's capacity for injustice and cruelty is juxtaposed with transgression personified by young Gerard, his gang and his constantly switching radio dial of pop music fragments. The purposeless destruction following the night of drinking and dancing is given such zombified staging that seems to function as an immutable representation the destructive urge in very universal terms.
The overall form is of a truly religious yet undogmatic consciousness, refusing certain gestures of release common to myth making.
This one is sort of impossible to review. Most people will hate it. Some will adore it. Others, like myself, will trudge through it, enjoying bits while having no idea why. It is cinema as art. Actors move around like robots, scenes exist in the briefest way that they can, feet are photographed, narrative is thrown to the side in favor of who knows what. I don't understand it, but certain scenes are likely indelibly printed on my mind for the rest of my life, again with me having no idea why.
Give it a try. You'll probably hate it, but it may just grow on you in retrospect. Or not.
Watching this story through the eyes of a mule is terribly sad. It is almost too much at times. This is a beautiful piece of art, but I don't think I will ever watch it again. It is too heartbreaking.
Au Hasard Balthazar is a movie of extraordinary beauty, and earth-shattering tragedy, and a Godliness that can't simply be put into words. It's the story of a girl and her donkey, and the parallel existence between the two. They are abused and tortured by piggish men. The moral is as Catholic as movies get. The more Balthazar suffers, the wiser and holier he becomes. By the end of the movie, he's a saint, surrounded by a flock of sheep, as he lays to rest. The final scene alone is an unmistaken triumph of the power of cinema.
Good film, but very dull at times which makes the film hard to sit through
It looked nice but I hated the style of acting and I don't wanna watch people be horrible to a sweet lil donkey for an hour and a half.
It took me a few hours to fully grasp the impact of Au hazard, Balthazar but once I did, I was a wreck. The film is quite powerful, but not for any conventional reasons that have anything to do with form or even content. Bresson infuses the proceedings with his typical objective spirituality, but there is something more intangible that makes the film so gruelling to watch. I can literally never watch this thing again, not because I don't want to, not because it's not a great movie (it is) but because it's just so damn depressing. I never achieved a catharsis of any kind that other films of this type usually strive for. Godard summed it up pretty well…
Fascinating story that follows the life of a donkey through good times and bad, while paralleling the life of a young woman.
Warning: maybe not a good watch for animal lovers.
Yep, still cried.
Combined the average ratings (Critic's & Users) from IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic and Letterboxd, and then weighted and tweaked the results…