6.9/10
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The Mill and the Cross (2011)

Mlyn i krzyz (original title)
The film focuses on a dozen of the 500 characters depicted in Bruegel's painting. The theme of Christ's suffering is set against religious persecution in Flanders in 1564.

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(screenplay), (screenplay)
10 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Nicolaes Jonghelinck
...
Mary
Joanna Litwin ...
Marijken Bruegel
Dorota Lis ...
Saskia Jonghelinck
Bartosz Capowicz ...
Crucified
Mateusz Machnik ...
Wheelfied
Marian Makula ...
Miller
Sylwia Szczerba ...
Netje
Wojciech Mierkulow ...
Jan
Ruta Kubas ...
Esther
Jan Wartak ...
Simon
Sebastian Cichonski ...
Peddler
Lucjan Czerny ...
Bram
Aneta Kiszczak ...
Mayken
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Storyline

The film focuses on a dozen of the 500 characters depicted in Bruegel's painting. The theme of Christ's suffering is set against religious persecution in Flanders in 1564.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Behind every great painting lies an even greater story

Genres:

Drama | History

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Details

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Release Date:

18 March 2011 (Poland)  »

Also Known As:

El molino y la cruz  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$11,354 (USA) (16 September 2011)

Gross:

$310,900 (USA) (3 February 2012)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

A few minutes before the end of the movie, a red automobile crosses the background between two houses, while Bruegel and Nicholas Jonghelinck are speaking in the foreground. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Gorgeous but flat and clunky
28 April 2011 | by See all my reviews

This gorgeous reconstruction of Bruegel's painting is ultimately more impressive than inspiring. There is no character, no narrative, no emotion in this piece and there's not that much analysis, either, despite the director's claims. I just saw it at the SF Film Fest, and the likable and knowledgeable director gave a lengthy lecture a) on how long it took to find the fabric for the costumes and b) on the loss of our ability to read pictorial symbols. Sadly, the latter was not related to (or within) the film directly--that would have been interesting indeed!--and neither is the impressive (expensive) production design enough to make this work compelling.

If you are interested in symbology and art history, see Peter Greenaway's, far superior Nightwatching, a film with a plot and lively characters as well as a fascinating view into the meanings (and the USE of meanings and symbols) of another famous Dutch painting, which, despite also suffering from some bombastic elements, still manages to engage the viewer in its own right as a movie.

Also Derek Jarman's Caravaggio comes to mind as a film that uses tableaux to evoke the painter of the title. Despite--or perhaps due to--being somewhat opaque and strange, the Greenaway and Jarman films (and almost any of their work) are far more interesting than The Mill and the Cross, because they use the medium of film to SHOW and not TELL. This literal and slavish reproduction of the painting was impressive in its verisimilitude but ultimately pointless and superficial.


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