Werckmeister Harmonies

Werckmeister Harmonies Image
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 8 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 75 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Based on László Krasznahorkai's novel "The Melancholy of Resistance," this is an uncanny fable about powerlessness and tyranny. Set in a small Hungarian village at a moment of great crisis, a mysterious circus comes to town with a giant whale and news of an appearance by a Prince known forBased on László Krasznahorkai's novel "The Melancholy of Resistance," this is an uncanny fable about powerlessness and tyranny. Set in a small Hungarian village at a moment of great crisis, a mysterious circus comes to town with a giant whale and news of an appearance by a Prince known for his strange powers. Soon the locals' emotions are stirred to a fever pitch of anticipation. (Anthology Film Archives) Collapse

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. This is as challenging as movies come, alluding to everything from philosopher Thomas Hobbes to the history of Western music.
  2. 100
    While Tarr's newest epic, Werckmeister Harmonies, isn't intended for the shopping-mall crowd, it is more viewer-friendly and will please adventurous moviegoers.
  3. An indelible statement on loneliness and spiritual thirst.
  4. Mysterious, poetic and allusive, The Werckmeister Harmonies beckons filmgoers who complain of the vapidity of Hollywood movie making and yearn for a film to ponder and debate.
  5. 90
    The pacing is slow, but the film is entrancing and earns a permanent place in the viewer's mind.
  6. 80
    The film could easily be reduced to a parable of post-Communist Eastern Europe, but the allegory digs deeper into the very order of things, exemplified by 17th-century musicologist Andreas Werckmeister's arbitrary imposition of a "tempered" tonal system over naturally occurring tunings.
  7. 80
    A work of bravura filmmaking.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 34
  2. Negative: 8 out of 34
  1. BobA
    Jan 6, 2007
    10
    I know I'm supposed to comment more on the film than the other comments but I always thought that if you disliked a film then by all I know I'm supposed to comment more on the film than the other comments but I always thought that if you disliked a film then by all means lay into it with vigor. But to criticize those who disagree with you instead is cheap. If the only way you can comprehend those with differing opinions is by considering them to be idiots, then that's pretty darn sad. Werckmeister Harmonies is a long, quite, difficult film that represents the best in art cinema. If you're a fan of Tsai Ming-Liang or Tarkovsky, you'll love this. If you don't like it after 10 minutes you wont like it after 2 and a half hours, turn it off and do something else. Cheers! Expand
  2. davidg
    Jun 13, 2009
    10
    If this is not among the top 10% of the thousands of movies that have been released in the world in the last hundred years, there must be a If this is not among the top 10% of the thousands of movies that have been released in the world in the last hundred years, there must be a huge disconnect between popularity and quality: a problem with the idea of voting for the good itself. Expand
  3. AndresZ.
    Jun 16, 2007
    10
    Bela Tarr's surreal epic is an advance in pure avant-garde mastery - proof of Tarr's rise to power in Hungary. There are only 39 Bela Tarr's surreal epic is an advance in pure avant-garde mastery - proof of Tarr's rise to power in Hungary. There are only 39 shots in the film, yet all are evocative of the presence of true magic. Along side with the great roles in the film, Tarr's mise-en-scene is flawless at capturing the fear and atmospheric in its perfectly realized milieu. By far, "Werckmeister Harmonies" is, in every sense of the word, a masterpiece. Expand
  4. May 9, 2016
    9
    Werckmeister Harmonies is an example of how we take a harmony and make them look great in front of the view we're seeing and reviewing thisWerckmeister Harmonies is an example of how we take a harmony and make them look great in front of the view we're seeing and reviewing this movie in any course of the park. Expand
  5. Mark
    Aug 22, 2006
    6
    This film deserves praise for the chances it takes. Its visual style and steadily mounting mood of dread are expertly done and hauntingly This film deserves praise for the chances it takes. Its visual style and steadily mounting mood of dread are expertly done and hauntingly effective. These strengths keep me from rating this film below a 5. The same cannot be said for its exploration of its themes. It is a film that means to suggest more than is there, a laudable goal but one I don't feel was achieved. Its intentions are simply overmatched by its pretensions. After a while, the wooden performances and long takes become more than tedious and the overreliance on heavy-handed "symbolism" insulting. Ultimately, this film is nowhere near as insightful as it pretends to be. Expand
  6. Dec 7, 2012
    4
    This guy imagined a good movie, but he wasn't able to do it. He got lost in typical pretentious mystification of art-house European cinema.This guy imagined a good movie, but he wasn't able to do it. He got lost in typical pretentious mystification of art-house European cinema. A simple e strong story about social disorder is wasted on the director's need to profess his affiliation to a Cannes-type cinema. Great photography and excellent camera operation wasted on scenes that result remarkably boring. Acting direction has many ridiculous and amateurish moments. Beautiful music is also wasted when it's not used on the proper moments. In short, a film that could have been good if the director was more concerned with the film he wanted to make then he was with the kind of cinema from which he intends to move away from. Expand
  7. BradC.
    Aug 1, 2007
    1
    This movie was one of the worst movies I have ever seen. Poorly acted, poorly filmed, and horribly paced. The movie is pointless and This movie was one of the worst movies I have ever seen. Poorly acted, poorly filmed, and horribly paced. The movie is pointless and unentertaining. You will feel the pain of you brain cells dying throughout the the film should you make the mistake of watching it. Expand

See all 34 User Reviews

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