Au Hasard Balthazar

In this 1966 Robert Bresson film, Balthazar the innocent donkey passes through the hands of several cynical, brutal or indifferent owners, eventually dying, a donkey-saint. Jean-Luc Godard said of the film that it was “the world in an hour and  a half”.

Roger Ebert, the film critic, begins his 2004 review of the film as follows: ‘Robert Bresson is one of the saints of the cinema, and “Au Hasard Balthazar” […] is his most heartbreaking prayer. ‘

And Susan Sontag wrote: “Bresson is interested in the forms of spiritual action—in the physics, as it were, rather than in the psychology, of souls… . Bresson’s Catholicism is a language for rendering a certain vision of human action, rather than a ‘position’ that is stated.”

Study of a donkey - Paul Sandby

Paul Sandby

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This entry was posted in Art, Catholic, Film and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Au Hasard Balthazar

  1. Frere Rabit says:

    As the owner and keeper of four beautiful donkeys, I can only watch this film if I steel myself and grit my teeth, ready to look at the harsh reality of sin. It makes me weep every time.

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