- Rated: Unrated
- Run Time: 1 hours, 37 minutes
- Video: Black & White
- Released: April 29, 2008
- Originally Released: 1943
- Label: Imports
- Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
Performers, Cast and Crew:
USA Today - 03/24/2000
"...Carl Dreyer's eerily disturbing masterpiece is the greatest film about witchcraft ever made..."
Total Film - 07/01/2003
"Blending austere black-and-white visuals with vigorous symbolism and sour psychological scrutiny, Carl Dreyer's searing, pessimistic masterpiece possesses real emotional wallop..."
Sight and Sound - 06/01/2006
"What Dreyer does demonstrate horribly clearly is how quickly a close knit community can be riven with bigotry."
Dreyer's horrifying masterpiece based on Hans Wiers Jenssen's play which, in turn, was based on actual records of witch trials during the 1600s. An old woman curses the local clergyman and his family as she is burned at the stake in this sobering and ghastly study of religious fanaticism.
Carl Theodor Dreyer directed this austere and beautiful tragedy, set in 16th century Denmark.
A pastor presides over a trial for witchcraft, ultimately finding the accused guilty. He sentences her to death at the stake, but as she burns, the elderly woman screams out curses and accusations. Most damningly, she claims he spared another sorceress out of love for her daughter, Anne -- who has since become the pastor's wife.
Her words remain in the cleric's mind, haunting him endlessly. And soon it seems as if the curses will come to pass, too, for Anne has begun a romance with her stepson... an affair that will have dire consequences for them all.
- Other crew: Erik Aaes and Lis Fribert (art directors), and Poul Schierbeck (score composer).
- Other cast: Sigrid Neiiendam (Merette, Pastor Absalon's mother), Preben Lerdoff (Martin, Absalon's son), Anna Svierkier (Marthe), Albert Hoeberg (the Bishop) and Olaf Ussing (Laurentius).