Films that “grapple” with Faith: “First Reformed” (2018) and “Novitiate” (2017)

First Reformed PosterFirst Reformed (2018)  

First Reformed” comes from director Paul Schrader, who co-wrote the scripts to such films as “Taxi Driver” (1976) and “Raging Bull” (1980), and who directed “American Gigolo” (1980) and “Affliction” (1997), among other films. It tells of Reverend Ernst Toller (Ethan Hawke), a priest in the First Reformed church in Snowbridge, New York, who tries to help one man with his obsessive radical-environmentalist beliefs, but who ends up fighting his own inner demons instead. This film works well on many levels, but it is probably its deep philosophical, existentialist-like quality, as well as its masterful execution, which distinguish it above others. Deep, thought-provoking and resolute, “First Reformed” grapples interestingly with the questions of faith and morality, and, by the end, becomes both a subdued and quiet meditation on life and internal despair, and an explosively powerful statement on hope.

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“Les Misérables” Review

Les-Miserables-Poster1

Les Misérables (2012)

Coming from Tom Hooper, director behind the Academy Award-winning film ‘The King’s Speech’ (2010), ‘Les Misérables’ is the latest film adaptation of the world-renowned musical and the classic book of the same name. Starring Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe, Helena Bonham-Carter, Amanda Seyfried, Sacha Baron Cohen and Eddie Redmayne, ‘Les Misérables’ is this year’s cinematographic achievement like no other, nominated for eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

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“Les Miserables” Trailer

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