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The White Ribbon (another movie review)

April 26, 2010

They say it takes a village to raise a child. Michael Haneke’s movie feels like it is the classic commentary on that saying. The sheer beauty of the cinematography in black-and-white is the first thing that stands out. However there are more virtues. Haneke’s dark vision of the human condition is spelled out in a fine attention to detail which is deeply disturbing. The slow pace builds towards an emotional climax, which however, leaves as many questions unanswered as it answers. It is a mystery/thriller which is ultimately more interested in the characters and the human dynamic than in whodunit. The whole village is the focus of our attention – its theology, its secrecy, its violence, and most of all its children. The result for the viewer is a total immersion in the life of a German village in the run-up to WW1. Satisfying if not exactly pleasurable.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. ann permalink
    September 17, 2010 2:28 pm

    dbh: Do you know of or do you have a list of unknown movies that would be good for Theather & Theology gatherings? Not ‘religious’ movies per se, but those that deal with spiritual issues, such as Fanny & Alexander. Have you seen ‘Children of Heaven’? That is a beautiful piece.

  2. bruce hamill permalink
    September 17, 2010 11:46 pm

    I don’t know how unknown my list is, there are many I think worthy of theological engagement. You may have seen my review of ‘An Education’ on this blog. Others that immediately spring to mind include, Pan’s Labyrinth, Disgrace, Atonement, Dogville, Pleasantville, The Lives of Others, Four Minutes, Devil’s Advocate, Bonhoeffer, Apocalypto, Cold Mountain, As it is in heaven, The Edge of Heaven, Before Sunset, Before Sunrise, Instinct, Babel, Match Point, Little Miss Sunshine, Baader Meinhof Complex, God on Trial.
    There are probably many more… but I’m not good at remembering lists like this

    • ann permalink
      September 18, 2010 12:36 pm

      That’s a good list to start with – I will check those out. Thanks much!

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