Silence was one of the most provocative, moving bits of cinema I saw last year. It’s complex and murky and inspiring and troubling and beautiful–all of which, in a way, reflects how I interact with faith itself. Perhaps, when we attempt to understand and embrace the transcendent, it can be no other way.
The movie is arguably one of Martin Scorsese’s most overtly religious works. But as many have noted, almost every movie that Scorsese has ever done is about, in some way, faith.
Scorsese recently screened Silence at Fuller Theological Seminary at its Pasadena, Calif., campus. And afterward, he sat down with Fuller professor Kutter Callaway and Brehm Center Director Mako Fujimura for a fascinating conversation about faith, film, and Silence. Scorsese unpacks how he struggled to put together the last 20 minutes on film. He discusses how he’s tried to “re-invent” Christianity for a new generation, stripping the overt piety and grandeur we saw in, say, Cecil B. DeMille’s The Ten Commandments and rooting it in the everyday. And he talks about his own Catholic faith and how intrinsic it is in his own life.
“Where do I go to find the meaning of existence? The meaning of life?” Scorsese says. “That, for me, is Christianity. That’s the real saving grace of our world, of our species, really.”
It’s a fascinating conversation. Take a look.