Ordet (The Word)
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With his masterful Ordet (aka The Word, [1955]), legendary Danish filmmaker Carl Theodor Dreyer examines the conflict between internalized personal faith and organized religion. Dreyer sets the drama in a conservative, super-pious Danish town, where widower Morten Borgen (Henrik Malberg) -- the father of three boys -- cuts against the grain of the community with his constant heretical doubt. One of his sons, Mikkel Borgen (Emil Hass Christensen), is entangled in an interfaith romance with a fundamentalist's daughter, while the second, Anders Borgen (Cay Kristiansen), is an agnostic, and… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Both emotionally and intellectually the picture is hypnotic, and some portions will nail the spectator to his seat."
‑ , New York Times
"Dreyer's Ordet (1955) is far simpler than his previous films, taking place mostly in a single set, but also more complex."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"A film with a hypnotic, irresistible stare."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"Tragedy strikes, and petty denominational squabbles disintegrate in Dreyer's sublime synthesis of humanistic and textual faith, a vision of purity and clarity."
‑ Kelly Vance, East Bay Express
"This is an overwhelming emotional and intellectual experience, thanks both to its subject matter and its austere yet potent presentation."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"A strange, wondrous and shocking work. Once seen, it's unlikely to leave you."
‑ Dave Calhoun, Time Out
"The greatest movie about religion."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"Guaranteed to make you levitate from your cinema seat in awe."
‑ David Jenkins, Little White Lies
"Ordet's faithfulness is both old fashioned and invigorating"
‑ Dan Jardine, Cinemania
"Dreyer is digging deeper than these slogans ["institutional religion" versus "personalized faith"], to the regions of mystery where Johannes's mind was lost."
‑ Steven D. Greydanus, Decent Films Guide
"With arresting faces but not cluttered with close-ups, attention-getting camera abilities beyond judicious lighting, or mood music, the film builds to a long emotional finale of biblical parallel."
‑ Donald J. Levit, ReelTalk Movie Reviews
"There are only 114 shots, each averaging over a minute, only three close-ups, and the film demands and rewards the closest attention."
‑ Philip French, Observer [UK]
"At first glance it may seem slow, but stick with it and the psychological tensions enthral."
‑ Philip Kemp, Total Film
"Reminiscent of Ingmar Bergman's spare style when exploring similar themes (eg The Seventh Seal), Dryer's work is disciplined and focused, rather like a Jesuit, really."
‑ Urban Cinefile Critics, Urban Cinefile
"A moving work of great intelligence, compassion and sensitivity."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
More reviews for Ordet (The Word) on Rotten Tomatoes