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Features Four Frames

Four Frames: A Short Film about Killing (Krzysztof Kieślowski, 1988)

Kieslowski’s Decalogue seems to resort, at times, to self-consciously symbolic imagery: a bee clinging to a straw as a neighbouring man in his bed clings to his life, a swinging rubber devil’s head on a doomed taxi driver’s car mirror, and wax tears running down the cheeks of a religious effigy. Yet rather than affirming […]

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Features Four Frames

Four Frames: The Wicker Man (Robin Hardy, 1973)

The words “oh God” have been uttered countless different times in cinema, but never with such uncomprehending horror as when Edward Woodward’s sacrifice-in-waiting howls them out in The Wicker Man. Religious intolerance and zealotry have been unfortunate bedfellows for thousands of years and are brought to the fore in Robin Hardy’s cult classic. Ostensibly about […]

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Features Thousand Words

Thousand Words: The portrait of the religious movie by an atheist director

Ever since its earliest days, cinema has, to quote the esteemed French critic André Bazin, “always been interested in God”. Whether it be biblical tales of all scales and budgets, stories about saints and sinners, or more grounded accounts of everyday church professionals, filmmakers have consistently returned to the well of religion to draw inspiration. Many of the […]

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Features Four Frames

Four Frames: There Will Be Blood (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2007)

There are numerous gods in Paul Thomas Anderson’s nihilistic nightmare rendering of the American Dream. Oil, Money and Power are the deities worshipped by both oil baron Daniel Plainview and his nemesis, the serpentine preacher Eli. Throughout the film, iconography and symbolism that can be attributed to the Almighty reveal the duplicity and manipulation at […]