First Reformed

"A fierce film from Paul Schrader, one of the crucial creators of the modern cinema." The New Yorker

Showing Times

Fri 20 Jul 18:30
Fri 20 Jul 20:50
Sun 22 Jul 19:30
Mon 23 Jul 11:00
Mon 23 Jul 15:00

This is an uncommon story about a Calvinist priest, Toller (Ethan Hawke), for whom religion comes easily enough but Faith is more difficult.  His quiet crisis erupts when one of his parishioners, pregnant Mary (Amanda Seyfried), asks him to counsel her husband Michael, a doomsday environmentalist who can't in all conscience bring a child into the world.  With his Faith found wanting - and perhaps grudgingly agreeing with Michael’s own doubts - Toller endures his own Gethsemene; a breakdown, an awakening, or a political reckoning, take your pick.  He comes through it with his faith scourged and remade, and his plowshare remade into a sword.

For many film fans writer/director Paul Schrader is a rogue - if intermittent – genius. At his height he’s left a huge mark: as writer of Taxi Drive and Raging Bull, director of American Gigolo, Blue Collar.  Even for Schrader-watchers, though, First Reformed is being called an epiphany.  It has been declared one of the best American films of the year.  Hawke's austere performance is the stuff of master classes, and the film is furious and darkly funny.  It asks some big questions - given extra resonance in this era of populist politics - and then leaves us to consider our own responses.  Says the excellent critic A O Scott in the NY Times:  “It asks us to take another look at what we think we know about politics, religion and other things we like to argue about, and asks nothing more than our quiet attention.”  Okay, you got it!


Film Information

113 mins

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