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Past Films

First Reformed

  • Starring: Ethan Hawke, Amanda Seyfried, Cedric the Entertainer
  • Director: Paul Schrader
  • Genre(s): Drama, Thriller
  • Rating: R
  • Running Time: 108 min.

Reverend Ernst Toller (Ethan Hawke) is a solitary, middle-aged parish pastor at a small Dutch Reform church in upstate New York on the cusp of celebrating its 250th anniversary. Once a stop on the Underground Railroad, the church is now a tourist attraction catering to a dwindling congregation, eclipsed by its nearby parent church, Abundant Life, with its state-of-the-art facilities and 5,000-strong flock. When a pregnant parishioner (Amanda Seyfried) asks Reverend Toller to counsel her husband, a radical environmentalist, the clergyman finds himself plunged into his own tormented past, and equally despairing future, until he finds redemption in an act of grandiose violence. [A24]

"A film of fascinating conversations, anchored by Hawke's completely genuine performance."
- Brian Tallerico,
"A fascinating meditation on inner turmoil in which doing the right thing can lead down many wrong directions."
- Eric Kohn, indieWire
"Hawke's performance is his most mature to date, a masterpiece of a man who cannot work himself out and yet is compelled to try. "
- John Bleasdale, CineVue
"The film itself, shot in Academy ratio in the dead of winter, is quieter and more sensitive than anything else Schrader has directed, with Ethan Hawke giving one of his finest and most moving performances in the lead role. "
- Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, AV Club
"The sort of stimulating work that a writer-director of a certain age can deliver when he returns to his creative sweet spot; rejoice, Schrader fans, rejoice."
- Alonso Duralde, TheWrap
"After more than 20 features, Paul Schrader has been reborn with First Reformed, an unhurried, furious, deeply agonized look at faith and skepticism that’s as reverent as it is blasphemous. "
- Greg Cwik, Slant Magazine
"Full of conviction, First Reformed feels like a lifetime of preoccupations and traumas distilled beautifully, accompanied with a haunting sparseness creating a profound deliverance. "
- Rodrigo Perez, The Playlist


  • Friday, 6/22 tbd