A Hidden Life

A Hidden Life

DVD - 2020
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Based on real events, this is the story of an unsung hero, Franz Jg̃erstt̃ter, who refused to fight for the Nazis in World War II. When the Austrian peasant farmer is faced with the threat of execution for treason, it is his unwavering faith and his love for his wife Fani and children that keep his spirit alive.
Publisher: [United States] : Disney/Fox Searchlight, [2020]
Edition: DVD.
Branch Call Number: DRAMA 791.4365 HIDDEN
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (174 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.
Dolby digital 5.1,Dolby digital 2.0
video file
DVD video


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May 30, 2021

“A Hidden Life,” written and directed by Terrence Malick, is an excellent telling of good versus evil. The movie stars a bunch of European actors you’ve likely never seen. It’s almost three hours long and moves slowly.

It’s based on true events- a farmer in the mountains of Austria refuses to join the German army (after Germany has absorbed Austria) because he won’t swear an oath of loyalty to Hitler. He also sees the evil in the Nazi politics and war effort and what it is doing in Europe. This movie covers 1939-1943. He and his wife are Christians (but the German Catholic church leaders generally did not resist Nazi Germany in this period and left the Jagerstatters to fend for themself). Franz and Fani appear to have been genuine Christians, resisting evil in non-violent ways. In the short run, don’t count on a happy ending, but in the long run perhaps you will meet them in Heaven.

Most audio is in English, though some scenes include people speaking/singing in German. Has English subtitles too. It’s rated PG-13 because of the thematic material including some violent images (the film keeps most of the beheadings, beatings, shootings and torture off screen, but not all of it). Definitely not a movie for kids. Beautiful scenery around their village, but the scenes in Berlin show that evil in the heart will eventually become visible.

A powerful picture of a war between Christians and evil. A preview of the upcoming Tribulation years (see the Bible prophecy in Revelation) when “friends and neighbors” will take on the Mark of the Beast and turn upon anyone who does not.

LPL_TraciB Apr 17, 2021

Terrence Mallick’s most recent film is the true story about Franz Jägerstätter, an Austrian conscientious objector during World War II. It poignantly depicts the consequences he and his family faced due to his steadfast belief in doing what he felt was right by refusing to serve in the Nazi Army. This has the usual elements of a Malick film: idyllic scenery & cinematography; portrayal of evil and heart-break against a backdrop of love and beauty; all brought together with voice-over narration and incredible music. Fans of Malick’s work will be renewed by his brilliance, and those unfamiliar with his films will become a fan.

Feb 25, 2021

Although many of the scenes seemed choppy the first half of this moving showed beautiful scenery, old ways of farming and village community. I feel like making this lllllloooooonnnnggg
film depicting the emotional turmoil of this man and others like him protesting Hitlers' war was somehow trying to change the perception of Germans as evil men (though many of them were) ; which is not necessary as Germany and German people have done So much not to repeat the travesties of the past and have been for-runners of human rights and environmentalism. A whole hour or more could've been cut out of this film, specifically the last half. I wish I had only watched it until he got on the train. At least I was spared the gory murder of this fine war objector. Absolutely beautiful cinema photography and beauty of the Austrian mountain village and area. I would've given it 5 stars but it left me feeling so down I just couldn't. Not an uplifting ending.

Feb 10, 2021

Given how inconsistent Malick has been over the past decade ("Song to Song" was his worst film.), I did not have high expectations for this World War II drama, based on the story of Franz Jageerstatter, an Austrian farmer who was a conscientious objector executed by the Nazis. Like most of his recent films, it is more lyrical than narrative, although it does have a stronger storyline than his last three films. As with all his work, it's beautifully shot and composed, using music, elliptical storytelling, and voiceovers. This, because of its subject, has a stronger emotional core and an excellent lead performance by the German actor August Diehl, who has also played Karl Marx. It's a long and sometimes difficult film, as well as a very spiritual one, but it's Malick's best since "Tree of Life."

Jan 23, 2021

This movie had great cinematography, but it was very long, and a dark ending.

Jan 22, 2021

I cannot stop thinking about this movie. Franz Jagerstatter, who the film depicts, was declared a martyr and beatified by the Catholic Church so in the end his life wasn't completely hidden. This movie attempts to depict quiet faith and very internal struggles; I think that is why it may seem too long to many. The scenes are meditative - akin to "slow tv" and there is none of the gore and drama common to WW2 movies. I thought it was probably a very realistic depiction of an Austrian community enlisted to fight with Hitler and the consequences for folks who go against the grain. I loved the little scenes of kindness exhibited by both Franz and his wife, even as most everyone around them chooses cruelty. In our modern time of performative activism, especially online, I thought this story beautifully illustrates how to live a just, authentic life.

Dec 26, 2020


Dec 25, 2020

This movie is very interesting - however - and it is a big HOWEVER - this movie is 3 hours long and it needed severe editing. The story could have been told equally well in 100 mins. I fast forwarded a lot - but I didn't miss much - who needs to watch someone walk in a field for 15 mins without saying anything except touching the top of the grass. This is the same throughout the movie - scenes extended way beyond the need to tell the story and it was painful at times to endure the long silences where nothing was happening of importance. as you had already got the point.

Dec 08, 2020

'ValeriaBookworm' my thoughts exactly only infinitely better expressed!

A gorgeously filmed emotional journey that uses nontraditional filming techniques and editing to its full advantage. Less dialogue than the usual film presentation, I experienced it as one would when recounting ones own memories.
The filmmaker uses a series of visuals that are lovingly pieced together in a moving and beautifully lit scrapbook fashion that screams of love and happiness which turns to a tortuous struggle to maintain ones integrity and dignity .

Based on true events and yes, it is 3 hours!

Nov 08, 2020

I was very disappointed. It was not brought together. Kind'a hop skip & jump.

Louise Moore

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