Mineshaft Gap

It's a screening log, no more no less. Maybe I'll have something interesting to say one of these days...

Spirituality, Religion and Christ.

Au Hasard Balthazar is the best film about Christ I have ever seen. It is of course fitting that as opposed to Gibson's snuff film, here Christ is not a bleeding, portentous man but a simple donkey that allows for redemption in a world that offers none.

The story of Marie and Balthazar, of the struggling, weak human and the seemingly divine creature that gives her peace is heartbreaking and uplifting in equal measures. All the credit must go to Robert Bresson, a genius of the cinema. His film functions as a fully devout work, reverent and in awe of Balthazar and the divinity he represents, and at the same time is a scathing attack on the church and it's hypocrites. From the satanic Gerard, singing in the choir to the ineffectual, placating priest that comes to comfort Marie's mother the church is position at odds with the simple peace and transcendence of Balthazar.

Pessimistic about all of humanity, and yet clinging to the last thread of hope in redemption Au Hasard Balthazar culminates in austere beauty on a hillside, the donkey's terrible travels done. He has gone through his stations, and comes to rest in simple forgiveness and understanding. It is the most beautiful closing sequence I have ever seen.

In the end this is a film for the true believers as well as all those who wish to be.

My 10 favorite films of all time:
1. Citizen Kane
2. Rashomon
3. A Woman Under the Influence
The Royal Tennenbaums
5. Dr. Strangelove
6. Playtime
7. Au Hasard Balthazar
Band of Outsiders
9. Hannah and Her Sisters
10. Ghostbusters

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