Silent Light (Stellet licht) Reviews

  • Oct 30, 2018

    Have watched this movie using boxxy software . This movie is so emotionally powerful, even without a music score.

    Have watched this movie using boxxy software . This movie is so emotionally powerful, even without a music score.

  • Nov 04, 2017

    At first, I found the film almost unbearably slow. Its depiction of a Mennonite farm family in Mexico (speaking an odd-sounding German hybrid) was strong on observational detail but rather weak on narrative tension. Sure, the protagonist, Johan (nonprofessional lead actor Cornelio Wall), had let it be known that he was in love with someone other than his wife and that he had told his wife (but not his six or seven children), so this should have created some momentum. But even when he makes contact with his mistress Marianne and the situation becomes more palpable, the acting is so low-key (despite the crying) that it barely creates a ripple. However, slowly slowly, about an hour in, that feeling of transcendence so familiar from other slow movies, such as those by Carl Theodor Dreyer or Bela Tarr, started to kick in. A long car ride with wife Esther across a beautiful cloudy Mexican landscape that suddenly turns to drenching rain is the opportunity for that subdued emotion to break free, although director Carlos Reygadas still keeps things relatively restrained (it is the contrast between the stillness of everything and the dramatic nature of the events that heightens the feelings evoked in the viewer). Then, as if to acknowledge his influences and to remind us that we are focused on a religious community dealing with transgression, Reygadas explicitly references Dreyer's Ordet (1955). To say that he steals the epiphany from the earlier film might not be too far wrong but the context is so dissimilar as to make this more of a repurposing than a plagiarism. Thinking back then, you can see how some of the camera moves and other technical details of the film also evoke the Danish master -- but you need to put in the effort in order to secure this pay-off. And finally, we are left to ponder whether some sort of spiritual alchemy has taken place, some mea culpa that secures forgiveness and, yes, transcendence.

    At first, I found the film almost unbearably slow. Its depiction of a Mennonite farm family in Mexico (speaking an odd-sounding German hybrid) was strong on observational detail but rather weak on narrative tension. Sure, the protagonist, Johan (nonprofessional lead actor Cornelio Wall), had let it be known that he was in love with someone other than his wife and that he had told his wife (but not his six or seven children), so this should have created some momentum. But even when he makes contact with his mistress Marianne and the situation becomes more palpable, the acting is so low-key (despite the crying) that it barely creates a ripple. However, slowly slowly, about an hour in, that feeling of transcendence so familiar from other slow movies, such as those by Carl Theodor Dreyer or Bela Tarr, started to kick in. A long car ride with wife Esther across a beautiful cloudy Mexican landscape that suddenly turns to drenching rain is the opportunity for that subdued emotion to break free, although director Carlos Reygadas still keeps things relatively restrained (it is the contrast between the stillness of everything and the dramatic nature of the events that heightens the feelings evoked in the viewer). Then, as if to acknowledge his influences and to remind us that we are focused on a religious community dealing with transgression, Reygadas explicitly references Dreyer's Ordet (1955). To say that he steals the epiphany from the earlier film might not be too far wrong but the context is so dissimilar as to make this more of a repurposing than a plagiarism. Thinking back then, you can see how some of the camera moves and other technical details of the film also evoke the Danish master -- but you need to put in the effort in order to secure this pay-off. And finally, we are left to ponder whether some sort of spiritual alchemy has taken place, some mea culpa that secures forgiveness and, yes, transcendence.

  • Apr 10, 2014

    Reygadas y su peculiar estilo... Entretenida.

    Reygadas y su peculiar estilo... Entretenida.

  • Feb 04, 2014

    I feel as if this auteur director knew he could film absolutely beautiful shots and decided to pull a story out of his butt and ended it the way he did just because "screw people, this film is pretty".

    I feel as if this auteur director knew he could film absolutely beautiful shots and decided to pull a story out of his butt and ended it the way he did just because "screw people, this film is pretty".

  • Oct 18, 2013

    Poderosa, ambiciosa, poetica y llena de simbolismos, Luz Silenciosa es una oda al amor y a la naturaleza. Imperdible.

    Poderosa, ambiciosa, poetica y llena de simbolismos, Luz Silenciosa es una oda al amor y a la naturaleza. Imperdible.

  • Jul 13, 2013

    A bit raw, plain, & strange.

    A bit raw, plain, & strange.

  • May 01, 2013

    Very, very slow flick that manage to stay interesting all the rather long playtime. It has pretty interesting themes, with super religous people and affair stuff. First of all this is a very pretty film. The camera work is simply amazing and we get fantastic images over the screeen regulary, always presented as very long shots, often static, sometimes very orignal with an artsy touch. My first film from the young director, but I have heard some interesting things about "Batalla en el cielo" as well. I definitely see some Mallick here, and some Haneke as well. A well acted and well presented film that got that emotional undertone, but it rearly fully bloom. It's silent and pretty, calm but touching. Art on screen - pretty nearly perfectly presented. 8.5 out of 10 minutes of kissing.

    Very, very slow flick that manage to stay interesting all the rather long playtime. It has pretty interesting themes, with super religous people and affair stuff. First of all this is a very pretty film. The camera work is simply amazing and we get fantastic images over the screeen regulary, always presented as very long shots, often static, sometimes very orignal with an artsy touch. My first film from the young director, but I have heard some interesting things about "Batalla en el cielo" as well. I definitely see some Mallick here, and some Haneke as well. A well acted and well presented film that got that emotional undertone, but it rearly fully bloom. It's silent and pretty, calm but touching. Art on screen - pretty nearly perfectly presented. 8.5 out of 10 minutes of kissing.

  • Feb 10, 2013

    I must confess, I feel like I have failed this film. I had heard a long academic talk about this film, its subtle techniques and how they contribute to its meaning, and it turns out that the talk was more exciting than the film itself. Roger Ebert put this in his top 20 list for the best movies of the 2000s, and other critics also assure me that it is great. I honestly can't quite convince myself of that idea, and I'm in no mood to watch this movie again anytime soon. The movie takes place among a group of Mennonites in Mexico (probably the first time this particular group has been portrayed in a movie, for what that's worth). There's a farmer named Johan, who is married to Esther and has a bunch of kids with her. However, he's having an affair with Marianne, with whom he is in love. He doesn't know what to do. And that's pretty much all the story it has. The movie is artier than arty. It somehow manages to combine some of the most characteristic (and, for many people, exhausting) features of Terrence Malick and Andrei Tarkovsky, without being as compelling as either. Nearly every shot in the movie lasts for a very long time. Usually when a shot lasts a noticeably long time in the movie, I ask myself, "Why is the director holding this shot so long?" Usually I can come up with a good answer specific to that shot. In this case, any given shot is long because every shot is long, and that's just the way the movie rolls, so you better get used to it. The two best shots in the film are the first one - a five-minute sunrise - and the last - a maybe three-minute sunset. They have little thematic bearing on the movie. Then again, maybe they lack thematic bearing because the movie lacks themes. At least with The Tree of Life, I did feel like the movie was trying to be about something, even if it was in an ultimately unsatisfactory way. I'm not sure this movie is really about anything. There's a miraculous occurrence at the end of this movie. I feel like I should have been moved. I felt nothing. Take all this with a grain of salt. It's entirely possible that I'm just not up to the task of appreciating this film.

    I must confess, I feel like I have failed this film. I had heard a long academic talk about this film, its subtle techniques and how they contribute to its meaning, and it turns out that the talk was more exciting than the film itself. Roger Ebert put this in his top 20 list for the best movies of the 2000s, and other critics also assure me that it is great. I honestly can't quite convince myself of that idea, and I'm in no mood to watch this movie again anytime soon. The movie takes place among a group of Mennonites in Mexico (probably the first time this particular group has been portrayed in a movie, for what that's worth). There's a farmer named Johan, who is married to Esther and has a bunch of kids with her. However, he's having an affair with Marianne, with whom he is in love. He doesn't know what to do. And that's pretty much all the story it has. The movie is artier than arty. It somehow manages to combine some of the most characteristic (and, for many people, exhausting) features of Terrence Malick and Andrei Tarkovsky, without being as compelling as either. Nearly every shot in the movie lasts for a very long time. Usually when a shot lasts a noticeably long time in the movie, I ask myself, "Why is the director holding this shot so long?" Usually I can come up with a good answer specific to that shot. In this case, any given shot is long because every shot is long, and that's just the way the movie rolls, so you better get used to it. The two best shots in the film are the first one - a five-minute sunrise - and the last - a maybe three-minute sunset. They have little thematic bearing on the movie. Then again, maybe they lack thematic bearing because the movie lacks themes. At least with The Tree of Life, I did feel like the movie was trying to be about something, even if it was in an ultimately unsatisfactory way. I'm not sure this movie is really about anything. There's a miraculous occurrence at the end of this movie. I feel like I should have been moved. I felt nothing. Take all this with a grain of salt. It's entirely possible that I'm just not up to the task of appreciating this film.

  • Feb 03, 2013

    La mejor pelicula de todos los tiempos, tienen que verla una y otra vez, mejor sin subtítulos!!! (comentario no hecho por mi, obvio).

    La mejor pelicula de todos los tiempos, tienen que verla una y otra vez, mejor sin subtítulos!!! (comentario no hecho por mi, obvio).

  • Jan 06, 2013

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