Sacrifice (1986)

Overview

The Sacrifice, director Andrei Tarkovsky's final film, begins in Bergmanesque fashion on a small, remote island, where friends and family gather for drama critic Alexander's Erland Josephson birthday celebration. The revelry is interrupted by a radio announcement: World War III has begun, and Mankind is only hours away from utter annihilation. Each of the guests reacts differently to the news: the most dramatic response is Alexander's, who promises God that he'll give up everything he holds dear--including his ...
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Overview

The Sacrifice, director Andrei Tarkovsky's final film, begins in Bergmanesque fashion on a small, remote island, where friends and family gather for drama critic Alexander's Erland Josephson birthday celebration. The revelry is interrupted by a radio announcement: World War III has begun, and Mankind is only hours away from utter annihilation. Each of the guests reacts differently to the news: the most dramatic response is Alexander's, who promises God that he'll give up everything he holds dear--including his beloved 6-year-old son -- if war is averted. Allan Edwall, a local mailman with purported mystical powers, offers to intervene with the Creator on Josephson's behalf. The Sacrifice is so dependent upon its visuals and overall mood that any attempt at a detailed synopsis would be woefully inadequate. The willingness of Tarkovsky's protagonist to forego all his possessions may well have sprung from the cancer-ridden director's awareness that he, too, would soon be giving up everything to face his Maker. The Sacrifice won four awards at the Cannes Film Festival, including the Grand Prix.
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Special Features

Disc 2; ; Trailers; Galleries
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Andrei Tarkovsky's final film is an appositely apocalyptic work that serves as a fitting capstone to a brilliant and much too short career. Incorporating many of the thematic and formal concerns of the Soviet master's career, the film has a twilit, haunted quality, no doubt imparted by its ominous nuclear holocaust scenario and Tarkovsky's death from cancer just months after its completion. This parable of belief and redemption seems located on the edge of the world. The children of an esteemed, retired actor gather at the family's far-flung country house to celebrate his birthday. The eerie tranquillity is shattered by the roar of passing jets and news from the continent that a nuclear war has broken out. As always with Tarkovsky, the plot is hardly the point. The eschatological story occasions the kind of grave philosophical and spiritual inquiry that has defined Tarkovsky's movies. Shot by Ingmar Bergman's longtime cinematographer Sven Nykvist, The Sacrifice contains some of the most powerful images in Tarkovsky's monumental oeuvre. Perhaps it's most transcendent moment is the penultimate scene, an epic, six-minute-long take that stands as one of the wonders of cinema. A powerful statement of humility in the face of the unknown, The Sacrifice is an exquisite parting word from one of the great artists of the 20th century.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/5/2011
  • UPC: 738329075026
  • Original Release: 1986
  • Source: Kino Video
  • Presentation: Remastered
  • Language: Swedish
  • Time: 1:39:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 26,892

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Erland Josephson Alexander
Susan Fleetwood Adelaide
Allan Edwall Otto
Gudrún Gísladóttir Maria
Valérie Mairesse Julia
Filippa Franzen Marta
Tommy Kjellqvist Little Man
Sven Wollter Victor
Technical Credits
Andrei Tarkovsky Director, Editor, Screenwriter
Anna Asp Art Director
Arne Carlsson Cinematographer
Katinka Farago Producer
Florence Fouquier Makeup
Lisbet Gabrielsson Producer
Kjell Gustavsson Makeup
Lars Hoglund Special Effects
Michal Leszczylowski Editor
Sven Nykvist Cinematographer
Lars Palmqvist Special Effects
Inger Pehrsson Costumes/Costume Designer
Rick Roberts Special Effects
Watazumido Shuoo Score Composer
Svenska Stuntgruppen Special Effects
Lasse Summanen Editor
Johan Toren Special Effects
Anna-Lena Wibom Producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Sacrifice
1. Opening Titles [:12]
2. A Barren Tree [5:40]
3. No Such Thing as Death [9:26]
4. Lost Wisdom [8:24]
5. Gift and Sacrifice [7:17]
6. Incident Collector [5:13]
7. Chaos [8:52]
8. Aftermath [11:54]
9. Awake From a Dream [7:31]
10. The Lord's Prayer [8:11]
11. One Last Chance [4:46]
12. Escape [4:56]
13. Dirty Hands [9:16]
14. Mother's Garden [5:46]
15. Savior [7:00]
16. "Forgive Me" [7:01]
17. Preparation [7:11]
18. The Conflagration [11:05]
Disc #2 -- Directed by Andrei Tarkovsky
1. Remembrance [:12]
2. Set Design [8:17]
3. The Cinema Image [7:26]
4. Inner Tension [7:04]
5. The Actor [6:55]
6. Mise-en-scène [9:36]
7. Bird Cherry [6:08]
8. Dreams [9:54]
9. The Poet [8:30]
10. Take One [9:40]
11. Take Two [7:17]
12. Immortal [7:29]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Sacrifice
   Play Film
   Chapters
   Subtitles
      Subtitles: On/Off
         Subtitles: On
         Subtitles: Off
Disc #2 -- Directed by Andrei Tarkovsky
   Play Film
   Chapters
   Extras
      Trailers
         The Return
         The Rider Named Death
         The Vanished Empire
         Ward #6
      Galleries
         The Sacrifice
         Directed By Andrei Tarkovsky
   Subtitles
      English Subtitles: On/Off
         English Subtitles: On
         English Subtitles: Off
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