Gertrud (1964)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Nine years after the release of his acknowledged masterpiece, Ordet, Danish director Carl Theodor Dreyer offered this a story of an individual in search of a measure of personal peace and serenity, which proved to be his last completed film. Gertrud Kanning, like the maid Joan in Dreyer's best-known film, La Passion de Jeanne d'Arc, is a woman in isolation. On the eve of her husband's appointment to a cabinet minister post, she announces that she is leaving their loveless marriage. But her … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Carl Theodor Dreyer, Hjalmar Söderberg
In Theaters:
On DVD: Sep 9, 2008
Criterion Collection

Watch it now


as Gertrud Kanning

as Gabriel Lidman

as Kanning

as Gustav Kenning

as The Kennings' Maid

as Kenning's Mother

as The Rector Magnificu...

as Erland Jansson

as Axel Nygren
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Gertrud

Friend Ratings

No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.


Critic Reviews for Gertrud

All Critics (19) | Top Critics (6)

It's exquisite, unbearable, and unforgettable.

Full Review… | May 22, 2014
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Dreyer's film depicts repressed carnal desires that merge with Gertrud's inevitably frustrated spiritual one: the longing for a love so total and consuming that it contains the seeds of its own destruction.

Full Review… | May 22, 2014
New Yorker
Top Critic

Nina Pens Rode has the right luminous quality for the romantic, uncompromising Gertrud, while the men are acceptable if sometimes overindulgent in their roles.

Full Review… | December 25, 2008
Top Critic

One of the most purely cinematic discourses of the 1960s.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

In his best films there has always been an underlying human concern that sustained us through any longueurs of execution. Here, under the slow, posed pictures, there is nothing but the dated theme described above.

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

Gertrud... is more museum piece than masterpiece, for this muted and stately study of a woman's quest for perfect love already seems to have been gathering dust for decades.

Full Review… | November 2, 2002
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Gertrud

morose, but the characteristic cadence and sensitivity of Dreyer's mise en scene can always captivate the heart.

Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer

In "Gertrud," Gustav(Bendt Rothe) is excited at the prospect of being named cabinet minister. His wife Gertrud(Nina Pens Rode) is alright with this because she sees this as confirmation that he does not love her anymore. In fact, she has already taken a younger lover, Erland(Baard Owe), in plotting an escape plan from her marriage.

"Gertrud" is an immaculately crafted but stagy and talky melodrama. So much so, that the characters cannot but help express their feelings at every turn, overstating the central conflict between men's ambition and women's love.(What Gertrud should be so concerned with is why she is so continually attracted to alpha males.) Even at the time the movie is set at the turn of the 20th century, this is simply a stereotypical view of gender relations. In fact, there have always been ambitious women but in the past those ambitions were limited by the men around them.

Walter M.

Super Reviewer

I KNOW! Three? THREE?! Yeah, three. I gave the last one five-out-of-five and this one I'm giving three. I would have gone lower, but there are some really good shots and the concept itself is pretty solid.

I hate this review: "This movie is boring." What does that mean? It means that it is not constantly grabbing your attention because your involvement as a viewer is minimal. I'm sorry, but I watched this movie twice because I was bored sh*tless. I kept daydreaming during this movie and then realized that I had missed entire sections of dialogue. Now, I was crazy involved. I've watched all of Humain, Trop Humain and all that is consists of footage of sheet metal being shaped. This movie was crazy dull. Now, I'm going to call Pat out on this movie. This movie is more like a theatre piece than an actual film. The camera rarely moves and the cuts are extremely few and far between. But here's the beef. Theatre requires blocking. This is almost the equivalent of hearing a staged reading. Now, if this was a staged reading, I'd be far more lenient on this movie. But it is not. The camera sits, representing the proscenium and the actors sit and talk. Talk and talk and talk and talk. Personally, I have always considered action significantly stronger than words. Rather, all I hear is about a woman who isn't happy in her relationship time and time again.

I hate to pull this card because Dreyer is significantly smarter than I am. But I saw Dreyer at his best and I honestly believe that this is weaker film. Sure, there's the very likely chance that "I just don't get it", but this movie encompasses the stigma of the Criterion Collection. It feels pretentious as crap and is dull for dullness's sake. I wanted to like it, I just can't say that it's good.

Gertrud Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Gertrud on our Movie forum!