Hors Satan (2013)
Average Rating: 6.3/10
Reviews Counted: 34
Fresh: 26 | Rotten: 8
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Average Rating: 6.2/10
Critic Reviews: 8
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 3
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Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 415
Angel or devil, good or evil, Christ or Satan: These are the mystical questions revolving around the nameless figure living in the coastal dunes outside of a small French town. Named one of the top ten films of the year by Cahiers du Cinema and an official selection of the Cannes Film Festival, Hors Satan is a provocative parable of identity, morality, and human relationships, defying notions of genre to become a mesmerizing and haunting original. -- (C) New Yorker Films -- (C) New Yorker Films
Jan 18, 2013 Limited
New Yorker Films - Official Site
Inarticulate characters, long blank stares, forced camera angles and allegorical nonsense make up this pretentious study in quasi-religious ennui.
Maddening, pretentious, hypnotic and transcendent in roughly equal measure.
Despite its pictorial intensity and the extremity of some of its scenes, the film proceeds in a mood of detachment, turning the suffering physical beings under its scrutiny into abstractions.
Hors Satan is stark, strange and uncompromisingly personal. It's also vivid and unforgettable.
Dumont's rigorous, serious attention to the mysteries of good, evil, and faith rewards those willing to be confounded.
Ultimately less an arty provocation than a secular invocation, Outside Satan seems almost helplessly exploratory, an honest account of groping for grace.
God works in strange ways, especially when Bruno Dumont directs him. Or is that the devil?
The ambiguity of the episodic story with its sparse dialog, combined with the visually stunning landscape photography, makes "Hors Satan" a compelling, if overly long, composition.
"Hors Satan" could be grouped with Carlos Reygadas' "Silent Light" (itself based on Dreyer's "Ordet") and the films of Robert Bresson, but his minimalism makes his meaning more elusive, inviting less emotion than those filmmakers.
It's difficult to feel transported by the impossible when the film's world is already so clearly governed by the arbitrary.
Controversial yet meditative French drama makes inscrutability its raison d'etre.
As its title suggests, Satan grapples with the existence and nature of evil in the world, but it's hard to take such weighty matters seriously when they're explored with all the subtlety and grace of an anti-abortion pamphlet.
Provocative French filmmaker Dumont pushes boundaries even further with an astonishing approach to the Christian narrative (the title translates as Outside Satan), mixing the sacred and profane to shake up audiences and get us thinking.
The problem with "Outside Satan" is that the filmmaker has remained faithful to expectations without enlivening them.
Bruno Dumont's employment of his bucolic French backdrop here attends to Hors Satan's muddying spiritual ambiguity.
The film develops a powerful hold on the watcher as it progresses. But beware, it takes you on the weirdest of metaphysical journeys.
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- Outside Satan (Hors Satan) (DE)
- Outside Satan (Hors Satan) (UK)