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Directed by Carl Theodor Dreyer

Denmark 1943 97 mins. In Danish

Made nearly ten years after Dreyer’s landmark Vampyr, Day of Wrath, set in the 1620s, charts the loveless marriage of Anne (Lisbeth Movin) and the Reverend Absalon Pederssøn (Thorkild Roose). When Absalon’s son (Preben Lerdorff Rye) returns to the small village, Anne is forced to reconcile her feelings for the young man with her marital fidelity to Absalon. Meanwhile, an old village woman (Anna Svierkier) is being investigated for witchcraft by Absalon, but Anne is secretly sympathetic to her. Something must give; repressed emotion must surface, however uncomfortable. Produced surreptitiously during the Nazi occupation of Denmark, Day of Wrath is one of Dreyer’s most austerely beautiful works, hinting at the directions his stately, meticulous cinema would take in later works Ordet and Gertrud. “Dreyer’s impious, anarchic drama is a cry of rage at abusive authority, whether political, familial, religious, or moral; he celebrates erotic love as the natural order of things.”—Richard Brody, The New Yorker.

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