Title: Silence | Rated: R | Runtime: 161 min | Theaters limited (expanding)
How do you make a film about the Christian faith? Certainly many have tried, and many still try. Some – particularly many modern Christian filmmakers – paint non-believers as the enemy or point to belief in God as an answer that magically fixes just about every problem. While such films do make considerable money at the box office, they seem self-congratulatory and delight in providing answers that reinforce spiritual identity. This is, in my opinion, an elementary treatment and understanding of faith which glosses over the fact that faith is a process, shaped by a constant and often painful struggle between what one sees and a loving God’s promises. Belief and doubt go hand in hand, and that juxtaposition lies at heart of Silence, Martin Scorsese’s complex and delicate adaptation of Shūsaku Endō’s celebrated novel.