This is one foreign film that doesn't need subtitles!
The original title in German is “Die Grosse Stille,” the great silence. It is a title that is more than appropriate for 162 uninterrupted minutes of pure contemplation. The soundtrack is made only of the chiming of bells, nighttime psalmody, footsteps, wind, rain, and very little else.
It’s just like the passage of God in the First Book of Kings, 19:11-13:
“And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and powerful wind tore through the mountains, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. After the fire, there was the whispering of a gentle wind.”
These words – like others in the Bible that are no less powerful – appear on the screen repeatedly throughout the film. But these repetitions are always fresh, like the liturgies in Gregorian chant, the seasons of nature, and the daily lives of the monks of the Grande Chartreuse. Thanks to Sandro Magister
Because the only characters in the film are the monks of the Grande Chartreuse monastery of Grenoble, in the French Alps, the mother of all the Carthusian monasteries in the world.