2017 Certificate: 15

Synopsis

A razor-sharp return to form for writer-director Paul Schrader, this ferocious drama stars Ethan Hawke (perhaps never better) as the Reverend Ernst Toller - a tormented man of God turned righteous, robe-clad avenger. His days are spent sleepwalking through his meagre duties as the pastor of the titular Dutch Colonial church in Snowbridge, New York; his nights - fuelled by the bottle - devoted to making increasingly self-loathing entries in his handwritten diary. Still wrestling with grief and guilt following the death of his soldier son, Toller is snapped out of his routine when Amanda Seyfried's heavily pregnant Mary requests counselling for her husband (Philip Ettinger) - a despairing environmental activist questioning how it could possibly be right to inflict the consequences of our selfish actions on an innocent child. Food for thought.

Director

  • Paul Schrader

Cast

  • Amanda Seyfried

  • Ethan Hawke

  • Cedric the Entertainer

  • Victoria Hill

  • Michael Gaston

  • Philip Ettinger

  • Van Hansis