It seems in today’s world that being a Christian or following any religion can be quite a challenge. But none of it is as bad as the horrific things followers had to endure hundreds of years ago. Martin Scorsese, being the brilliant director he is, decided to give us his take on Christianity and its hardships bringing it to the rest of the world (in this case, Japan) and his latest epic titled Silence. Those of the faint of heart need not apply, as watching some of the torture scenes and hardships some of the characters go through will make you feel like you’re experiencing it with them, and that’s the power of film that Scorsese wields so well.
Fellow movie reviewer and editor Chris Sobrinski is also in agreement, and you can check out his detailed review of the theatrical version of the movie for plot info and more. This leaves me to give my take on the film and the extras on the disc that are sparse but just as powerful as the feature itself. Needless to say, as I sat through the slow burn that is Silence, there was always something deep or interesting happening that kept me glued to the screen, despite some of the horrific torture scenes that would cause most to walk away. This is hands down the best movie I’ve seen that depicts the true difficulties that Christians went through in order to share their faith, and often at great cost.
Not only does Scorsese craft a near perfect film, but also has a perfect cast for it as well. It’s quite brilliant and also disturbing how gaunt and thin the actors look in the film, as they capture the look and feel of portraying starving and tortured people perfectly while also giving spot on performances. Being able to experience this happening in high definition made the visuals and sounds stand out, as both come through detailed and clear which serves to pull you into the movie even more. As far as the special features go, there’s only one called “Martin Scorsese’s Journey Into Silence”. Running at around twenty-five minutes, this extra goes into how it took nearly thirty years to finally get this movie made while also going into how the cast was able to lose so much weight thanks to a strict diet, finding international filming locations, and of course dealing with faith. It would’ve been nice to have more features, but this detailed one is more than enough as it covers most of everything that went into the making the film in a nice amount of time.
If your heart (and stomach) can handle the gruesome torture and hardships some of the cast experience, you’ll want to take a look at Silence as it’s one of the best movies I’ve seen about faith and staying true as you can to it. Beautiful and brilliant performances highlight one of the best films you’ll see, but just be prepared to endure as these people of faith do.