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The Convent [Import]

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Product Details

  • Actors: Catherine Deneuve, John Malkovich, Luis Miguel Cintra, Leonor Silveira, Duarte D'Almeida
  • Directors: Manoel de Oliveira
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, DVD-Video, Full Screen, NTSC, Import
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • Release Date: April 3 2007
  • Run Time: 952 minutes
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Product Description

An American professor and his wife travel to a Portuguese monastery seeking documents for his thesis to prove that Shakespeare was a Spanish Jew who left in 1492 because of the Inquisition. It soon becomes apparent that the monastery is being cared for by Satan-worshippers.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 17 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A strange little trip Sept. 16 2007
By Kenneth Williams - Published on
Format: DVD
First of all, I have no idea why this movie is called The Convent. It takes place in a monastery.

This is one of the most sincerely bizarre films I have ever seen. Moodily photographed at an (real) abandoned monastery on the Portuguese coast, this chamber drama of six characters (three couples) is a throwback to the Faust and Eden stories, both at once, and seems, despite the literary and Biblical antecedents, completely fresh and unexpected, peppered with offbeat humor and framed with a sometimes mournful, sometimes terrifying musical score by the Russian composer by Sofia Gubaidulina. (If you fall in love with the music, as I did, the pieces are called "Officitorum" and "The Seven Last Words of Christ" and both are available on CD in excellent recordings. "Officitorum is a LONG, wildly expressionist violin piece which ends in the more formal and haunting part showcased in the movie.) The international cast speaks English, French and Portuguese indifferently.

To people with a little patience, a sense of playfulness and an eye for the strange and beautiful, this film is a real Halloween treat. After having watched the movie, you don't remember it so much as a movie. You remember it more as a dream. Days later you'll ask yourself: Did I see what I thought I saw, or am I imagining it?

Frankly, I'm thrilled The Convent gotten this new inexpensive DVD release.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Good and evil in ancient Portugal Dec 17 2008
By redboat - Published on
Format: DVD
A memorable film, very odd, and more than a little creepy. Interestingly set at an medieval monastery in Portugal, this little fable of good and evil has an opaque plot and relatively slow pace that some will find frustrating.

The monastery has descended into devil-worship, and its leader has strayed from proper reverence for Lucifer. (SPOILER ALERT: THE NEXT SENTENCE EXPLAINS THE UNDERLYING PLOT OF THE FILM.) Catherine Deneuve's character arrives on the scene, and takes care of the problem; she is Satan disciplining a follower. The interest in the film, other than the setting, very atmospheric music, and good acting, is the unexpected way the dark angel appears as an apparently unthreatening woman, and punishes her wayward disciple.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Philosophical Movie Oct. 4 2001
By Reinaldo de Medeiros - Published on
Format: VHS Tape
"O Convento" is a very strange movie, but is a enchanted movie also. Let-me try to explain this. If you don't like philosophy keep distance of this movie, but if you like some philosophical concepts from Nitzche, (specifically Zarathustra) you need to take this. It is not just another "just to fun movie", instead of this, is a movie that make you think about the evil and the goodness.
And, last but not least, you get a movie with Catherine Deneuve and John Malkovich but pay attention in a very impressive performance of Luis Miguel and the beauty Leonor Silveira that compose Piedade with delicate. Luiz Miguel and Leonor Silveira outperform Malkovich and Deneuve.
The only major problem: The sound isn't very good and some takes aren't good illuminated.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
This is not Hollywood Nov. 29 2004
By nersia - Published on
If you are looking for action, well explained plot and millions spent on computer effects - keep looking. This film is not for you, as it follows from previous reviews, you'll be very disappointed.

But if you wander around seeking a real pleasure for eye and mind - you've found it. It is very quiet, chamber, and definitely not straightforward. It is rather a sequence of brilliant etudes of light and color played by wonderful actors. Art of cinema at it's best.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Very Good Music Jan. 16 2011
By Customer - Published on
Format: DVD
This review is more of a reaction to the negative reviews. The music was actually really good and effective. Especially the scene where Baltar and Malkovich's character are looking out over the landscape. It was very refreshing to finally hear some music in a movie with real originality, complexity, and heart.