Wednesday, June 18, 2008

so I finally got around to watching...

... Into Great Silence and now, more then ever, I want to run off to a convent.


... no soundtrack, no commentary, no script, not even a film crew. Just the shots of changing seasons, sunrises and sunsets and the intoning of the monastery bells to mark the passage of time. The silence is interrupted every now and then with the chirping of birds, the mewling of cats, the monks chanting prayers and the sound of turning book pages.

The shots are lingering, water dripping off a roof, a spider in the corner, the candle flickering near the tabernacle, and monks kneeling in prayer. The shots are intimate, close up images of a monks hand while he fingers his rosary, eyelashes lowered over eyes closed in prayer, the shaved head of a monk, and the slight crinkles in the corner of the eyes of a sleeping Carthusian.

... it was like going on retreat without leaving my couch.


Dan Hunter said...

That was an awesome film!
I felt the same way.

If I was not married I would seriously pray for a vocation to become a priest in a monastary like this one.
God bless.

ACEGC said...

We watched it while on retreat in Hanceville--that movie was a spiritual experience in and of itself, and we really learned the value of silence and dispossession.

Mary Rose said...

You got to see it before I did! It's on my Amazon Wish List.

It sounds amazing. Thank God they finally allowed the film maker into the monastery to do this.

I so want to go on a retreat.

Adrienne said...

It's on my Netflix queue. I had to choose between Into Great Silence, the first disc of Brideshead Revisited, or Season Six of the Soprano's. Well, duh - Soprano's won:) I'm just not very holy sometimes - ok - most of the time.

Roman Sacristan said...

As someone who has visited the charterhouse in Vermont, I have to say that "Into Great Silence" was very well done and did capture (to what degree it could) the atmosphere of a Carthusian house).

Although nothing really compares to the intense silence and solitude with God that you can experience there. It can border on frightening. But it is an amazing vocation. I might not be called to that, but I certainly do respect their place in the Church.

Nadja Magdalena said...

Got it for Christmas and watched it on 3 consecutive evenings when the kids were in bed. It is wonderful.

Hey, why can't I see any of your pictures today? All I see is the word "photobucket" where the image ought to be.

LarryD said...

I loved that film. It took a little getting used to - about 45 minutes - but by the end, I was blown away. These men exude pure joy in their service to the Lord and to each other - one of my fave scenes is towards the end when they're sledding/skiing in their habits - like children on a snow day.

i'm going to watch it again.

Carolina Cannonball said...

and their laughter echoes ...

Dan Hunter said...

I just watched disc one of "Brideshead Revisited" and I would advise you not to watch it.
It is so impure and unedifying.
The whole disc shows the homosexual relationship between Ryder and Sebastian.
Sebastian vomiting in Ryders open window and constantly getting drunk and associating with lipstick wearing sodomite boosehounds.
Sebastian and Ryder are frequently seen holding each other and gazing longingly into one anothers eyes.

We get to see the bare naked heineys of both of them as they sunbathe naked on the roof of Brideshead.

There is one seen of the beautiful chapel at Brideshead and several allusions to Sebastians Catholic family.
Sebastian finds it hard to be Catholic because he enjoys his,"semi-pagan" lifestyle.

It is the gayest film that I have ever seen.

Rather, watch "The Passion of the Christ" or "The Fighting Sullivans" or "Come to the Stable."

Infinitely better than this sodomite piece encased in British pomposity and haughty nonsense.

Having said that, Waugh is an excellent writer though.

The film industry hates Catholicism, so they botched Evelyns work, big time.
God bless you.

a thorn in the pew said...

This film was responsible for turning my brother away from buddism back to the Catholic Church. He still considers himself in the middle but it's a start. We continue to pray for him.

Carolina Cannonball said...

thorn that wonderful!

Pax&Bonum said...

I didn't think a full length movie on monks would interest me, but your comments have inspired me to give "IGS" a look.

Adrienne- Instead of "Brideshead", try "Becket". It's now out on DVD, and it features Burton and O'Toole when they were young and vigorous, "in their salad days".

Their are many great lines and scenes in the movie; my favorite is the excommunication scene. We need to do this sort of thing today, regularly and publicly, there certainly are plenty of apostates and heretics who richly deserve it. My favorite line is- "The honor of God is a hard thing to bear".

How very, very true.

Dan Hunter said...

Becket is awesome.
That Excommunication rite is actually still used.
Deo Gratias!

liturgy said...

The experience of watching this in a cinema full in silence will never leave me.
Owning the DVD set
and the CD is bonus.
I write more about it here:

Kit Brookside said...

That was an incredible movie - I wept when the blind elderly monk was bathed by his brother, and laughed during the sledding part - just amazing. The special features are fascinating, too.

Padre Steve said...

I agree! Truly amazing!