20807

The Mill and the Cross

2011

Lech Majewski directed this visually striking examination of the nexus between art and politics in the 16th century. In 1564, the Flemish painter Pieter Bruegel created one of his best-known and most controversial works, "The Procession to Calvary," in which Christ, carrying his cross, makes his way to his own crucifixion though a crowded landscape that features representations of hundreds of historic and contemporary figures. The painting was a biting commentary on political matters of the day as well as a satiric view of religion, and in The Mill & the Cross, Majewski re-creates the making of Bruegel's masterpiece, as the artist (played by Rutger Hauer) stages the images and explains their meanings while we learn more about the individuals depicted and the people who posed for the work, many of whom have their own stories to tell. Using digital imaging technology, The Mill & the Cross allows viewers to enter into Bruegel's painting as the static figures come to life. Also starring Charlotte Rampling and Michael York, The Mill & the Cross received its American premiere at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. more..

Director: Lech Majewski

Starring: Rutger Hauer, Charlotte Rampling, Michael York, Joanna Litwin, Dorota Lis

Reviews

  • Here is a film of great beauty and attention, and watching it is a form of meditation. Sometimes films take a great stride outside the narrow space of narrative tradition and present us with things to think about. Here mostly what I thought was, why must man sometimes be so cruel?

    Roger Ebert - The Chicago Sun-Times

    27 April 2013

  • An investigation into Pieter Bruegel the Elder's painting "The Way to Calvary," Majewski's film is a stunning piece of art in its own right.

    Pam Grady - Boxoffice Magazine

    27 April 2013

  • The Mill and the Cross captures the wish that some of us have had while standing in front of a great painting. What hangs before us is so striking, beautiful, strange, vast, horrifying, ethereal, lifelike - so alive - that we're desperate to enter the other side of the canvas, to be inside the painting.

    Wesley Morris - The Boston Globe

    27 April 2013

  • No description can do justice to The Mill and the Cross, which must be seen to be fully appreciated.

    V.A. Musetto - New York Post

    27 April 2013

  • Majewski's film is a captivating exercise that will interest fans of art, not to mention arthouse cinema. But the movie's lasting impression is about more than novelty. It's a portrait of suffering and subjugation that urges viewers to stop what they're doing and take notice of the world around them.

    - The Washington Post

    27 April 2013

Awards

  • Best Costume Design (Najlepsze Kostiumy)

    Polish Film Awards (2012)

  • Best Costume Design

    Polish Film Festival (2011)

  • San Francisco Film Critics Circle (2011)