Silent Light (15)

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The Independent Culture

Winner of this year's Jury Prize at Cannes, Carlos Reygadas's meditation on love, infidelity and the divine begins with a quite astounding shot of the sun rising. Like everything else here it really lasts a family's grace before breakfast, a car journey, a lovers' kiss but if you have the patience then you may just find yourself beguiled.

Set among the god-fearing, black-clad Mennonites of rural north Mexico, the drama concerns an adulterous farmer (Cornelio Wall Fehr) who agonises between the woman he loves (Maria Pankratz) and the wife (Miriam Toews) who bore him six children. "Drama" might be too strong a word; essentially it's all stitched together from painterly compositions of figures, faces, landscape, the weather and long, long silences.

One sequence, soundtracked almost entirely by rainfall, is an exquisite metaphorical display of emotional tumult. Let me confess that a few times I wished Reygadas would pick up the pace a little but then so much of the film's poetry is in the pace. Just check that sunrise.