Scorsese makes a statement

In a career spanning more than 50 years and 24 narrative features, the one consistent thread running through Martin Scorsese’s work has not been guns and gangsters, but rather an obsession with spirituality and redemption. A self-confessed lapsed Catholic, each  of his films deals,  implicitly or explicitly, with religious themes, symbolism and iconography, and this is crucial to understanding his vision as a film-maker.

 

SILENCE

Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Andrew Garfield, Adam Driver, Tadanobu Asano, Ciaran Hinds, Liam Neeson
Rating: (R16)
Four stars (out of five)

 

Silence might well be his most personal statement yet, and in a filmography of highly visceral, violent and technically superb masterpieces, it stands out for its quietly contemplative and effortless artistry. It’s as if a lifetime of devotion to the cinematic craft has been spent in the service of this profoundly touching exploration of the nature of faith and religion.

Adapted from Shusaku Endo’s 1966 novel, it is a true passion project, having been in development for almost 30 years, and yet somehow it couldn’t feel more timely. Set in 17th century Japan, where Christianity has been outlawed, the story tells of two young Portuguese missionaries (Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver) searching for their missing teacher (Liam Neeson), who is thought to have apostatised, or renounced his beliefs, under  torture.

Every element falls precisely into place, the two leads and supporting cast are outstanding, the photography is beautiful and evoking, and the pace is unhurried and meditative. It is also not an easy watch, raising a multitude of deep and troubling theological questions that no mere movie could possibly answer.

- Jeremy Quinn

Comments

Well, that's the thing. If the questions are raised, it is up to the viewers (readers) to examine them, if they are not scared shirtless. Any day without forked lightning is a good day.

Looks like small town new Zealand

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