Into Great Silence


Into Great Silence is a French Documentary film released in 2005; European Film Academy Documentary Award - Prix Arte. This Italian version* has no subtitles. The documentary is an exploration of silence and spirituality.

In this contemplative documentary from filmmaker Philip Gröning, the Grande Chartreuse monastery opens its doors to the public for a rare occurrence, since being founded by St. Bruno in 1084, to offer an intimate look at a lifestyle rarely experienced by any, outside of the monks of the order. Located in the remote regions of the French Alps, near the Dauphiné Alps, the Grande Chartreuse is the Mother-house monastery of the Carthusian order external_link.

In this 164 minutes documentary, the lives of the monks of the Grande Chartreuse are captured on film as director Groening adapts to their ascetic lifestyle for six months, and captures their daily life without the intrusion of voice-over, musical score, interviews, or archival footage.

The first words spoken in the film are sung after 18 minutes of silence: Domine, Labia mea aperies..."

*Note that after 1:28 the synchronization of the sound precedes the image by 45 seconds.