Yet another year with yet another update.
2012 version can be found here.
2013 version can be found here.
Johan and his family are Mennonites from the north of Mexico. Against the law of God and Man, Johan falls in love with another woman.
I was rather amused that my wife and I were tricked into watching Mexican director Carlos Reygadas’ Silent Light by our friend Caker Baker. Kind of like tricking someone into watching Bella Tarr’s The Turin Horse. I like that kind of mean humor.
Reading afterwards, they say that Reygadas is most heavily influenced by Dreyer and Tarkovsky. I haven’t seen anything by Dreyer yet, although Ordet has been on the shelf for some time, and as far as Tarkovsky, from my limited exposure his lush visuals are matched with wordy philosophising. Silent Light is the antithesis of wordy. No, for my money, this guy is Tarr minus the dire hopelessness.
You can tell right from the beautiful opening sequence of…
Silent Light is a remarkable film, magnificent in scope and cinematic prowess of the highest order. It seems as though I cannot applaud Carlos Reygadas enough.
Reygadas is a self proclaimed fan of Danish grand master Carl Theodor Dreyer and his inspiration drawn from him is undeniable. Some have went as far as to claim Reygadas may even be a borderline plagiarist in these regards. (Spoilers for those who have seen Ordet and not this film) The finale of this film mirroring almost nearly to the exact shot placement and set decor of Dreyer's Ordet let alone its content. But other than that and the fact of both films centering in a strict religious society (although religion not playing as…
Carlos Reygadas' Silent Light opens with a full five-minute unbroken shot of the sun rising in a time lapse. I am aware that I'm prone to hyperbole often, but it is one of the most beautiful things I have seen in a film, and viewing it in the darkness late at night I felt tears welling up at the sheer wonder of this cinematic collision of beautiful framing and warming lighting. It is an opening shot of enviable perfection.
The film is the story of a devoutly religious, married man whose dedication to God is rendered distraught and paralysed by his passionate affair with a younger woman (who at times looks intriguingly similar to his wife) with whom he has…
“I’d give anything to turn back time . . . go back to things as they used to be.”
I wanted to let some time pass before watching Stellet Licht, knowing that it was largely inspired of and influenced by Carl Th. Dreyer's 1955 masterpiece Ordet which I had been profoundly moved by almost one year ago. Whilst Mexican auteur Carols Reygadas borrows heavily from said film, he has appropriated specific elements to deliver an equally profound and poetic masterpiece.
Set in a Mennonite community in Mexico, Reygadas applies a neorealist touch to the proceedings by using non-actors, natural lighting, languid pacing and minimal dialogue to invite us into an almost sacred space and worldview, where the hand of God…
"Peace is stronger than love."
This is the way that the greatest of stories are meant to be told, with keen attention to detail, overwhelmingly beautiful visuals, spiritual subtext, and the opportunity for audiences to interpret as they please.
Two of the most important (and very much connected) moments in the film concern the phenomenon that we humans call time, with a focus on the setting of clocks; if you're at all confused by the existential climax of Silent Light, think deeply about these two moments and the answers may come to you.
Certain images, I will never forget;
the soulful sky, the purple flower, the blue umbrella.
I remain in awe.
Like Bresson before him (not to say that…
Day 2. 5th Film, 4th Country: Mexico
of the "May: 30 Days, 30 Countries" Challenge.
Let me start with a WOW and then Add another WOW and the third WOW!
This was amazing. It is not just a homage to Dreyer, it is as if Dreyer had woken up from the grave (ala Ordet) and made one more film. Even though most of the style and subject matters are from Ordet and Gertrud, it never feels like plagiarism or a recycle of those films.
The film takes place in Mexico but it is in Plautdietsch, a dialect spoken by over 300,000 Mennonites, most notably in the Latin American countries of Brazil, Mexico, Bolivia, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Honduras, Belize, and Argentina,…
Real MEATY. great stuff.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Film, karısını aldatan dindar bir adamın ailesiyle ve kendi iç dünyasında yaşadığı sorunları aktarıyor. Oldukça yavaş bir akışı var. Sürreal bir faktör olarak, filmin ortasında ölen karısının, filmin sonunda canlanması söz konusu. Filmin antidramatik özellikleri mevcut. İlk 6 dakikası ve son 6 dakikası, tamamen doğa ve gökyüzü manzaraları üzerinde kameranın gezinmesiden oluşuyor. Yani film doğa manzaralarıyla açılıp, doğa manzaralarıyla kapanıyor.
Carlos Reygadas has established himself as one of the most exciting directors working in cinema today and with good reason. With his four features and a small number of shorts, he has managed to create his own cinematic language that dictates his films while making them unique from one another. Silent Light is no exception as Reygadas observes a Mennonite family in Mexico as the patriarch of the clan deals with a crisis of faith. Reygadas' slow, methodic approach follows the turmoil these issues create within their lives. Filmed entirely with Mennonite Plattdeutsch language, the film explores a culture unknown to many, showing the cultural differences according to which these people live.
The film opens and closes with two similar…
In "Silent Light," Carlos Reygadas documents the life of a Mennonite family torn by infidelity. Serving as a Mexican Bela Tarr, the director presents long takes with a patient but not immobile camera, with a painterly composition and DV immediacy.
From the bravura opening shot of dawn breaking in time lapse over the cornfields of rural Chihuahua, Reygadas' work is impressive if more easily appreciated than loved. For, as in Akerman’s Jeanne Dielman, repressed emotion and affectless routine make sudden outpourings of emotion all the more powerful.
The film climaxes as the rain soaked lens film Esther’s grief over the loss of her marriage. And, while Spanish speaking truck drivers who stand outside their community have no way of understanding the roadside pieta that they encounter, we’ve been permitted privileged access. The conclusion is surprising if perhaps overly indebted to Dreyer’s Ordet, but the filmmaker downplays the miraculous and lets some measure of peace come to our troubled family.
A strange, yet mesmerising movie that you will remember.
Every nuance, moment, and suppressed, but firmly present and deeply felt emotion that accompanies the steady, painful process of heartbreak is painted here in every color making for a quietly transformative look at all the meaningful things of our lives slipping away as we only begin to realize how important they are all too late.
The film begins with an incredible shot of a sunrise. Slowly everything comes into focus and as the light shines on the camera begins to move closer in. It's a very slow but also very beautiful beginning. It's a few artistically wonderful moments in a brave and calm film.
contemporary world cinema at it's best, sounds a little dull on paper but the film is an experience, the plot is minimal and having it any more complicated would have taken away from the film
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
El protagonista es entrañable
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014, now updated every mid-April.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the…