The struggle between the strictures of religion and our own brute animal nature plays out amid the beautifully forbidding landscapes of remote Iceland in this stunning psychological epic from director Hlynur Pálmason. In the late 19th century, Danish priest Lucas (Elliott Crosset Hove) makes the perilous trek to Iceland’s southeastern coast with the intention of establishing a church. There, the arrogant man of God finds his resolve tested as he confronts the harsh terrain, temptations of the flesh, and the reality of being an intruder in an unforgiving land. What unfolds is a transfixing journey into the heart of colonial darkness attuned to both the majesty and terrifying power of the natural world.
“It’s a sharp, dryly funny, at times cruel exploration of human arrogance and frailty.” —Manohla Dargis, New York Times “A sumptuous travelogue it is not; a visually stunning, soul-clenching examination of the curious push/pull between humans and the environment it most certainly is…. GODLAND — its majestic Academy-ratio cinematography ideally maximized if seen in a theater — is the kind of bold work about which one could imagine Werner Herzog, upon viewing, feeling very seen.” —Robert Abele, The Wrap “With GODLAND, Pálmason — one of the foremost figures in Icelandic cinema — has enlisted us for a voyage of visual splendor, as terrifying as it is breathtaking, and divine contemplation. In cinema, he’s found a no man’s land where two opposing worldviews can have a visceral dialogue.” —Carlos Aguilar, IndieWire