Director: Carl Theodor Dreyer
Year Released: 1955
Rating: 4.0

This is simply a mesmerizing, austere depiction of dealing with personal faith - and tolerating the views of others - done in such a way that in the hands of any other filmmaker, it would have failed. Two families argue over the potential marriage of their children because of their altered views of how to approach spirituality - one sees it as suffering and penance, the other as living the best you can - although it's a lot more complicated than any simple paragraph can describe. The inclusion of a character that could either be mad or actually blessed (most think the former) at first seems off - he's flamboyant where everyone else is pensive - until the material plays itself out, and you realize how relevant he is to the works. I was slightly put off by how the one father "anticipates" the other man's "change" ... and then it happens some two minutes later, but the entire picture works on another level than "reality," rendering my criticism pointless. The ending, for all intents and purposes, should not work, but it does, and the result is wondrous.