Journal d'un curé de campagne (Diary of a Country Priest)
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Journal d'un curé de campagne (Diary of a Country Priest)
An austere look at the experiences of a young priest in a small French parish, Robert Bresson's masterly Le Journal d'un curé de campagne (Diary of a Country Priest) presents a powerful, complex exploration of faith underneath a deceptively simple exterior. Drawn from a novel by Georges Bernanos, the film centers on the priest of Ambricourt (Claude Laydu), a withdrawn, devout young man whose social awkwardness leaves him isolated from the community he is meant to serve. Further problems derive from the priest's ill health, which limits him to a diet of bread and wine and hinders… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 94%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The chance to see Robert Bresson's Diary of a Country Priest... should not be passed up; it is an enterprise of great pith and moment in the history of cinema."
‑ Anthony Lane, New Yorker
"A film that words fail."
‑ Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"Bresson's cinematographic tour de force is still incredibly impressive and affecting."
‑ David Parkinson, Empire Magazine
"...about the unexpected - and little understood - intermingling of the earthly and the divine."
‑ Josh Larsen, LarsenOnFilm
"Bresson exemplified 20th-century ecumenical intelligence that is much out of fashion today, yet remains singular and powerful."
‑ Armond White, New York Press
"A film like Diary of a Country Priest gathers its strength as it continues. There's always the sense that Bresson knows exactly where he's going and the simplest way to get there."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"The word 'sublime' has often been used to describe this Robert Bresson masterpiece, a slow-paced film of great purity that portrays the pain and occasional joy of the religious life."
‑ Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal
"This sublime picture is directed by Robert Bresson, who painstakingly crafts his signature visuals -- stark, forceful and rigorous in their attention to detail -- to bring a striking luminosity to the bleak events."
‑ Jamie Graham, Total Film
"Writer/director Robert Bresson adapts his first Georges Bernanos novel (the second, 1967's "Mouchette," plays almost like a mirror image) for his moving paean to spirituality and grace achieved despite great obstacles."
‑ Laura Clifford, Reeling Reviews
"Bresson sees spiritual disorder as a disease, not unlike the stomach cancer we suspect is-and is ultimately confirmed to be-plaguing our titular character."
‑ Rob Humanick, Slant Magazine
"Bresson's third feature and in many ways his first major work."
‑ Doug Cummings, L.A. Weekly
"The full scope of the film's brilliance hits you with the force of a knockout punch."
‑ Keith Uhlich, Time Out New York
"Diary is less a movie about the necessity of faith than what it means to be cut down in the midst of youthful idealism and intransigence, before life offers wisdom."
‑ Ben Kenigsberg, Time Out Chicago
"The film leaves me with a sad, empty feeling inside so I guess Robert Bresson did his job."
‑ Robin Clifford, Reeling Reviews
"Its rare glimpses of the French countryside are stark and striking, suggesting that any man who would truly pursue holiness will walk hard roads through desolate lands."
‑ Jeffrey Overstreet, Looking Closer