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Of Gods and Men(Des hommes et des dieux)

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France · 2010
Rated PG-13 · 2h 0m
Director Xavier Beauvois
Starring Lambert Wilson, Michael Lonsdale, Olivier Rabourdin, Philippe Laudenbach
Genre Drama, History

A group of Trappist monks reside in the monastery of Tibhirine in Algeria, where they live in harmony with the largely Muslim population. When a bloody conflict between Algeria's army and Muslim Jihadi insurgents disrupts the peace, they must make a choice: flee the deadly violence or stay to help their community?

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What are critics saying?


Variety by

As the film patiently (perhaps too much so for some) heads toward its foregone conclusion, Beauvois gradually raises his style to a level of baroqueness reminiscent of 1995's "Don't Forget You're Going to Die."


The New York Times by A.O. Scott

Of Gods and Men is supple and suspenseful, appropriately austere without being overly harsh, and without forgoing the customary pleasures of cinema. The performances are strong, the narrative gathers momentum as it progresses, and the camera is alive to the beauty of the Algerian countryside.


Boxoffice Magazine by Ed Schied

The film is masterfully directed by Xavier Beauvois who co-wrote the screenplay. At Cannes, Of Gods and Men received the runner-up Grand Prix. It's also France's selection for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar.


IndieWire by Eric Kohn

Ignore the precise religious context and it stands perfectly well as a restrained look at personal convictions in the face of certain death.


Village Voice by J. Hoberman

Beauvois's film is cool while Denis's is hot-but the main difference is that where "White Material" is knowingly postcolonial, Of Gods and Men aspires to the timeless.


Time Out by Keith Uhlich

Godly as the monks are, they are still human-which makes their ultimate sacrifice all the more devastating.


The Hollywood Reporter by Kirk Honeycutt

There are eight individual decisions to be made here, yet Beauvois never humanizes any of his monks. The film instead consumes itself with songs, communal prayers and nightly meals.


Entertainment Weekly by Lisa Schwarzbaum

It is their shared strength as a band of brothers humble before their Christian God - and indeed before the God of Islam - that may stir viewers to an awe that transcends skeptical opinions about religion or politics.


The A.V. Club by Sam Adams

Not withstanding rich performances from Wilson and Lonsdale, the film never comes close to embodying that level of complexity.

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