The film is not for the faint hearted! It is heartbreaking and gruesome at times! Despite this, It was hard to look away. Martin Scorsese directed this 2016 film and he did a good job of it. The plot includes main actors: Andrew Garfield as Sebastião Rodrigues, Adam Driver as Francisco Garupe and Liam Neeson as Father Cristóvão Ferreira.
Silence was based in Japan in the year 1633. At this time, Christianity was unacceptable and supporters of this religion andGod were told to “stand on a picture of their god”, and they would be set free. If they didn’t they would be tortured or killed.
Father Sebastião Rodrigues (played by Andrew Garfield)
Silence was a film following two priests (Father Sebastião Rodrigues and Father Francisco Garupe) who travelled to Japan to rescue Father Ferreira, who was rumoured to have surrendered his religion of christianity and stayed in Japan. The two priests went to find him, entering Japan, with a high risk of being caught and killed because of their beliefs.
They wanted to spread the word of Christianity and support Christians who were hiding from the Japanese. They came across a group of Christians who prayed in secret and hid God memorabilia. This did not get past the Japanese authorities and slowly they were picked and killed.
An iconic, if torturous scene included the death of three men. They were tried to crosses in a low lying rocky area by the sea. Slowly, as the water rose throughout the night, they drowned with one man surviving for four days. He spent his last day singing a happy tune whilst being battered by the waves.
Of the group of Christians the Padres met, a few gave in to the pressure and sinned on multiple occasions. They stepped onto the photo of their God, when asked and sinned. Father Sebastião Rodrigues and Father Francisco Garupe, however kept their faith and continued to help others. This was at the expense of others lives, as the padres’ belief in Christianity fueled the religion and members died as a result. They had both watched their followers die and as much as they wanted to get involved, it was their choice to stick to their values. They felt guilty and horrified by the scenes of torture and death.
Father Sebastião Rodrigues and Father Francisco Garupe (the padres’) split up as they were wanted by the Japanese, with a money reward for bringing him in. Father Rodrigues was found by one of his Christian followers who handed him to the Japanese for the money incentive. At this time he was unaware of where his fellow padre was, Father Francisco Garupe.
He was taken as hostage and offered a choice. Padre Rodrigues could save all the hostages if he goes against God and Christianity or they would be killed. He refused to betray God and they suffered. He felt guilty but he knew that if he gave up, than other Christians would not have anyone to believe it.
Whilst he was being imprisoned, Christians were still being killed. A group of Christians refused to defy God and stand on the picture of him. They were taken away and just as Padre Rodrigues felt glad, he heard an awful scream and to find a head of one of his followers rolling on the ground. They had chopped off all their heads in front of their family friends.
Padre Rodrigues was escorted to a beach, but not for a relaxing time out. The japanese bought a group of Christians and attempted to wrap them in a wooden rug. They then put them on a boat and stopped in a deep area in the sea. One of these victims was his fellow padre Francisco Garupe. One by one they pushed the victims off the boat where they were drowned and and pulled down by the weight of the wooden rug. Padre Francisco Garupe went over the save them and stop them from drowning and as a result of this he was held down in the water, drowning with the other victims.
Sebastião Rodrigues was angry, upset and trying to fight through the group of men who were blocking his path – they stopped him from saving his friend and followers. She was made to watch it all and live through the horror of it in his head. He was taken back to the camp and slept badly, visualising his friend float in the water.
Father Ferreira before he defied Christianity and remained in Japan.
Later on in his imprisonment, he met the very man he was coming to find.. Father Ferreira who was not the same man he thought he knew. He was studying astronomy and wiring a book unmasking Christianity. He no longer believed in God, Christianity and had adopted a Japanese name and attitude. Father Ferreira had to been presented with the pressure to defy God and stand on the picture… he did.
People were still dying because of him… was he right to stick to his faith or should be surrender?
He had completely lost his faith and had realised that God was not answering his calls. It was just… silence.
When presented with the opportunity again to support or defy God, he made a decision to go against his God. He fell to the ground and cried… he had sinned and had deserted his friends and followers.
In 1941, he was now living in Japan, alongside Father Ferreira and in this time he wrote a book on the lost priests. He married a dead victims wife he lived a long life. He died at an old age with no attempt to pray or plead to God. He was buried the Buddhist way and was laid to rest. But that they did not know was that inside his hand, that was clenched, laid a figurine of God.
All those years, he was following Japanese values, but inside he still loved God and stayed by him at his death.
Your can view the full trailer at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqrgxZLd_gE .
This film was long, approximately 159 minutes but it was two and a half hour of passion and grit. Following your religion is one thing, but following it, knowing that it is hurting others is another. The nice thing to remember is that although Padre Rodrigues chose to follow Japan, he still believed in God and died peacefully, holding the lord in his hand.
You may enjoy this film more than you think.
Bye for now.