It took me some time to comment on my most anticipated film of the year – “Silence”, by Martin Scorsese, but it was worth it…
The central notion of spirituality and human nature is the very essence of faith in this masterpiece by Mr. Scorsese.
We see two Jesuit priests (Adam Driver and Andrew Garfield) going on a journey in peril. The aim – to find their mentor – Father Ferreira, who has renounced his faith after being tortured in Japan.
St. Paul’s college in Macau is indeed a symbolical building to marvel at. It emphasizes on the transience of an era of devout, dogmatic Christianity. But still, its facade exhibits the magnificence of the human spirit. And how faith can travel and conquer, but also stay and change, transform any place in the world.
There is a really nice poem called “Footprints in the sand”. It speaks volumes of the Christian faith, and to that matter – volumes of any faith, which is righteous. It goes like this:
“One night I dreamed a dream.
As I was walking along the beach with my Lord.
Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand,
One belonging to me and one to my Lord.
After the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that at many times along the path of my life,
especially at the very lowest and saddest times,
there was only one set of footprints.
This really troubled me, so I asked the Lord about it.
“Lord, you said once I decided to follow you,
You’d walk with me all the way.
But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life,
there was only one set of footprints.
I don’t understand why, when I needed You the most, You would leave me.”
He whispered, “My precious child, I love you and will never leave you
Never, ever, during your trials and testings.
When you saw only one set of footprints,
It was then that I carried you.”
This is very much what to my account this movie is about. The hidden treasures of faith lie within our own understanding of life and its meaning. In “Silence” not all questions of father Rodrigues are answered, as nor do all of our delusions meet their end throughout our lives. But we all witness the pain and torture which the great ensemble of characters endure. Here, I must really praise the directorial work and all the actors’ incredible performances. We must emphasize that all characters – from the main one to the smallest and most episodic ones – are represented truly and faithfully.
We see Japan and the Japanese way of life as it is. Nothing is spared, nothing is hidden. Nature itself is a major character in this movie. It is no coincidence that “Silence” was nominated only for Cinematography for the annual Academy awards – perhaps this is the most incredible part of the film. I cannot explain enough how the visuals speak volumes of storytelling to the viewer. We are engulfed in the sounds and colors of this magical godly realm called Earth. You must truly experience this both beautiful and disturbing nature of the movie.
The screenplay twists and turns around us and our expectations. We feel our own doubts and remorse, we live the same life deeply within is and at the end of the journey we feel maybe a bit better about out choices in life. Not because the film gives a final solution, or because it pretends to be a parable. This monumental work from Mr. Scorsese about how the human spirituality works is a fine example of storytelling through introduction of a riveting internal dialogue within each and every viewer.
I myself feel the need to share this film with everybody that cares for cinema, spirituality and purpose in life. It is a shining example of a perfect movie experience and a carefully paved way to self discovery.