The Monk [DVD]
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Directed by Dominik Moll (Lemming / Harry He's Here To Help), THE MONK is a sumptuous adaptation of the eponymous cult classic Gothic novel which follows the rise and fall of a Capuchin Monk in 17th century Madrid.
Abandoned as a baby on the steps of a monastery and raised in strict Capuchin fashion, Ambrosio has become the most famous preacher in the country. While large crowds from all over the country come to hear his mesmerizing sermons, he's also bitterly envied for his success by certain fellow monks.
Convinced of his virtue and righteousness, Brother Ambrosio thinks he is immune to temptation until obscure events start terrorizing the monastery. Could they be connected to the unexpected arrival of Valerio, an apprentice monk who has the miraculous gift to relieve Ambrosio's splitting headaches and hides his disfigured face under a wax mask?
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Top Customer Reviews
The story concerns a monk, who as a baby was left on the doorstep of a monastery. He grows up with the monks and when he comes of age joins the order. He becomes known as a pious man whose sermons are famed for their eloquence and faith.
At its heart this is a Faustian tale that deals with temptation in the context of religious experience. That is one of it's more interesting aspects. Most horror films have religious tones or aspects, but this deals with the experience of faith and it's consequences.
I found a few of threads of the film predicatable, but some also surprised me, although when I thought about it the signs were there to see. I like that in a film, it lets you think about what it's telling you. Overall this is an interesting and intelligent horror film, well worth watching.
Absolutely Gothically beautiful and a stunning visual feast.
Loved the shot of the religious procession with the image of the Virgin staring up at the room where atrocities were being committed.
A magnificent effort imo.
Then a mysterious man turns up who has suffered disfigurement and asks to become a novice - but is he all he seems to be? Ambrosio is also haunted by a recurring dream and severe migraines all of which could be a sign from on high. Add to the mix the local goings on and the local nunnery and you have a potential mix of religious zeal gone slightly too far in the closeted world of 16th century Spain.
This is a mesmerising film which throws so much into the mix that I was shocked on a couple of occasions. The period detail is fantastic and the locations are stupendous. This is one of those films that just gets under your skin and takes you along for a very dark but rewarding ride indeed.
Excellent performances all round and the cinematography is both subtle and impressive with a score that adds the right amount of `mood' without being over dramatic. Although set in Spain this is a French production with quite good subtitles. Cassel is always good and this is a film that showcases his talent perfectly - absolutely recommended.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I guess it depends on what you were looking for or expecting as to whether or not you will enjoy this film. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Ozzieal
The DVD came quickly and was in perfect condition, the movie itself has so many shocking twists so if you're into those kinds of movies I'd definitely recommend it!Published 7 months ago by Sandra BM
Gothic horror in the style of the old Hammer movies. Entertaining, but little actual "horror".Published 18 months ago by L S.