One of the greatest achievements in recent art house cinema and a seminal work of “slow cinema,” Sátántangó, based on the novel by László Krasznahorkai, follows the members of a humble agricultural community living in a bleak and punishing backwater after the fall of Communism. As a few of the villagers secretly conspire to take off with all of the community’s annual earnings for themselves, a mysterious messiah, long thought dead, returns to the village and alters the course of everyone’s lives forever.
Shot in stunning black-and-white by Gábor Medvigy and filled with exquisitely composed long takes, Sátántangó unfolds in twelve distinct movements, alternating forwards and backwards in time, echoing the structure of a tango dance. Béla Tarr’s vision, aided by longtime partner and collaborator Ágnes Hranitzky, is enthralling and his portrayal of rural Hungary beset by drunken revelry, treachery, and near-perpetual rainfall is both transfixing and uncompromising. Sátántangó has been justly lauded by critics and audiences as a masterpiece and has been restored on occasion of its 25th anniversary.
New 4K restoraiton from the original negative and sound materials // New video interview “A Sense of Rhythm” with composer and actor Mihály Víg //
New video essay “Orders of Time in Motion” by Kevin B. Lee // 2007 archival interview with director Béla Tarr //
U.S. Theatrical Trailer //
New English subtitle translation //
New essay “How to Watch Sátántangó” by Janice Lee and Jared Woodland.