Customer Review

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Of God and the law, 11 Oct. 2009
This review is from: Day Of Wrath [1943] [DVD] (DVD)
Filmed by Dreyer in Denmark under the Nazi occupation,,the atmosphere of persecution and paranoia during a witch hunt through a 1620s Danish village is well captured.The parson's wife Anne(Lisbeth Movin)tries to save an elderly woman(Anna Svierkier) from being caught as a witch.Anne is the young second wife of Reverend Absolom,who saved Anne's mother from being tried as a witch.Herlofs Marthe is tortured and burned at the stake, cursing Absolom as she is put to the stake.The Absolom household is thrown into confusion as Anne falls in love with Absolom's returning son,Martin,under the suspicious gaze of Meret,Absolom's domineering,possessive mother.Absolom's marriage is loveless and childless,preferring to talk to God than his beautiful young wife.Anne wishes her husband,out in a storm,was dead,telling first Martin and then Absolom,who dies of heart attack on his return.In declaring her thoughts,she opens herself to denunciation,believing herself to have entered a secret hereditary vocation of evil.Dreyer's Rembrandt-like compositions and lighting,his fluid camera movement,minimal lighting and shadows of the austere,claustrophobic interiors,in contrast to the pastoral escapes into the open landscape of the young lovers,above all Movin's sexually charged performance as Anne,whose desires and sensuality are equated to satanism by the narrow minded.Dreyer highlights women's plight of how men co opt religious dogma to oppress and punish female desires.There is little chance of redemption.
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