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This is the story of a donkey and the somewhat difficult life it leads. During a summer holiday, the baby donkey is a child's pet but when they return home, it begins it's life of misery. It works as a farm animal, pulling a delivery cart and working as any manner as various owners require of it. Meanwhile, the young girl who first acquired Balthazar as a pet grows up, only to be badly treated herself by an indifferent and selfish boyfriend. —garykmcd
"Everyone who sees this film will be absolutely astonished," Jean-Luc Godard once said, "because this film is really the world in an hour and a half." Robert Bresson's 1966 masterpiece defies any conventional analysis, telling a story of sin and redemption by following Balthazar, a donkey, as he passes through the hands of a number of masters, including a peasant girl, a satanic delinquent, and a saintly fool. Perhaps the greatest and most revolutionary of Bresson's films, Balthazar is a difficult but transcendentally rewarding experience, and the director is better able than in his previous work to put his philosophy of cinema into practice, that is is to say, the filming and meditation of that which is concealed. This is a gorgeous Criterion DVD with and excellent digital transfer, and it includes some fine supplemental material such as a French television program which includes commentary from such notables as Godard, Malle, and Bresson himself, speaking about the film. Never to be missed.
- Nov 29, 2008
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