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Au Hasard Balthazar(Au hasard Balthazar)

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France, Sweden · 1966
1h 35m
Director Robert Bresson
Starring Anne Wiazemsky, Walter Green, François Lafarge, Jean-Claude Guilbert
Genre Drama

Balthazar, a donkey living in the French countryside, experiences different sides of human nature as he is passed around from owner to owner, some kind and others harsh. His story intersects with that of his first owner Marie, who faces similar harsh treatment, in this film from legendary director Robert Bresson.

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What are critics saying?


TV Guide Magazine by

This great film, made with uncompromising honesty and devastating reality, is, according to Jean-Luc Godard, "the world in an hour and a half."


Chicago Reader by Dave Kehr

Perhaps the greatest and most revolutionary of Bresson's films, Balthazar is a difficult but transcendently rewarding experience, never to be missed.


Village Voice by J. Hoberman

To cut to the chase, Robert Bresson's heart-breaking and magnificent Au Hasard Balthazar (1966) -- the story of a donkey's life and death in rural France -- is the supreme masterpiece by one of the greatest of 20th-century filmmakers.


Los Angeles Times by Manohla Dargis

If in Bresson's films nothing ever seems out of place or superfluous it's because he strove to find the essential truth of the image. Not an image or sound is wasted -- or offered up in self-glorification -- and from such seeming simplicity there arises a world of feeling.


Chicago Sun-Times by Roger Ebert

Bresson suggests that we are all Balthazars. Despite our dreams, hopes and best plans, the world will eventually do with us whatever it does.


Boston Globe by Ty Burr

To see Au Hasard Balthazar is to understand the limits of religious literalism in movies -- the limits, even, of movies themselves. Bresson pares everything away until all that's left are the things we do and the hole left by the things we could have done but didn't.

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