Une oeuvre salutaire et bienvenue, dénonciatrice des errances et des égarements de l'extrémisme religieux, d'une mordante ironie jubilatoire, qui véhicule allègrement la bêtise mystique, le déséquilibre existentiel et les maladifs substrats des habituelles bondieuseries éructées par nos grenouilles de bénitiers... www.cinefiches.com
I guess it was very optimistic of me to watch this after not being a fan of Paradise: Love. The problem here is that Seidl, by only showing caricatured bad and extreme behavior, creates a shallowness devoid of subtlety that manipulates you to distance yourself from it all and not discover the deeper meaninglessness behind the film's propaganda-like nature.
An extremely disturbing look at religious fanaticism. And although it didn't stretch to the lengths of killing others in the name of your religion, it does address the type of fervor that drives fanatics to empty their lives of everything except their golden idol. It's bizarre, over-the-top behavior that is horrifying... and yet FASCINATING! As a movie... this works really well.... until the movie doesn't end. Dang.
Distasteful as the subject matter is to me personally, (hence 3, not 4 stars) I can not fault the clarity of this filmmaking. I had the experience of being penetrated into many intimately revealing moments in these people’s lives, and yet, with that, the director stood back far enough to let me gather my own impressions and understandings. Substantial and well-crafted.
A woman so dedicated to her faith she is willing to allow herself to be physically abused by just about everyone she comes in contact with. This films shows a side of religion that maybe not everyone is familiar with. Its full of self punishment for sins and relentless door to door conversations with people all over the city she lives. Not sure if I should be intrigued or worried about part three to this trilogy.
I will say that this had very interesting parallels with the first film of the Paradise Trilogy, and the cinematography was completely satisfying. However, it takes religion's stereotypes to the extreme, which makes it very difficult to identify with. The ending contradicted the theme of the film as a whole. This topic has so much potential, and the unnecessary, overdone sexuality was a very disappointing attempt.
An affecting portrait of a hopeless desperate depressed Austrian Catholic. Few characters have been portrayed as so uniformly repulsive despite having been so complexly fleshed out. Seidl's hand-held camera work, visual austerity, and controversial subject matter never depend neither on hyperbole, as von Trier does, or surrealism to enthrall us, and thus remains terribly convincing throughout.
Although I find this to be lesser of the three, I feel it's a necessary piece to the trilogy. This film reaches a level of unflinching bleakness that can result from the obsessive nature of all of these characters. The difference in Faith seems to be that both Love and Hope stem from a level of naiveté and circumstance that almost justifies their obsessions. Whereas Faith is purely a decision Nabil made. Oh the Agony