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When suffering becomes one with opaque mists in alien lands at far away corners of this world, when answers only lead to further questions and when faith falls naked, similar to a burning star quietly plummeting in a dark night; Scorsese, like an old wise sage, whispers words of wisdom through impenetrable silences. He consoles your tortured beliefs, caresses your pains and reminds you to trust in the ever present truth of life.



When two Jesuit priests travel to Japan from Portugal to search for their mentor and also to preach Catholicism, they encounter disgusting sacrilegious acts being committed by the Monarchy against Christianity. Slowly, they are stripped of everything they ever believed in, as they scramble helplessly to protect their faith from swaying to nothingness. Drawing parallels between man’s ego, divine presence and wilderness of hearts, Silence demands a lot of patience and tolerance as it delivers a moving spiritual experience to the ones who stay engrossed in it.

It feels like coming of home for Martin Scorsese. He constructs every shot with such flair and respect, as if out of immeasurable devotion to his art. Its deliberate slow pacing deserves an applaud for a director who is at top of his craft. He makes us feel the same frustration that he felt while grappling with Silence and the characters face when being emotionally and spiritually stripped off in the barren lands of Japan. With a minimal background score, it manages to create heart-wrenching impacts. The heavy-handed concept ridden conversations never drag or preach more than they should, glorifying the beauty of belief even in the face of tremendous odds.



Martin Scorsese has directed a natural beast in its most untamed form. He puts in every shred of his troubled soul in creating a staggering piece of art which challenges by emotionally exhausting you, draws you near with enormous wonders hidden in its core and then pushes you away by ruining your peace with its sheer complexity. Silence is a work of unfathomable intellectual richness. It is deeply profound, intensely personal, wildly ambitious and wears the pointed crown of being a flawed masterpiece.

★★½

 

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