A film like a confessional. People go to church. People sit alone on a church pew, people pray to Jesus, who is everything to them: father and friend, redeemer and savior, guide and wailing wall - talkative, silent, loving. We meet a student who defies his parents and attends Mass daily, spends all his free time in the parish and simply tells Jesus everything and regrets everything: erotic fantasies as well as heroic dreams. And the retired chemistry teacher whose spouse cheated on her with another woman: In her prayers she dreams of vengeance. But isn't vengeance a sin? In formally rigorous shots Ulrich Seidl presents six fragmentary portraits of believers who ask questions, look for answers and spill their hearts out to Jesus. Each of these stories opens a space, an intimacy, a view of what one might call God. In The Wall Street Journal, John Waters named Jesus, You Know the best foreign film of 2006. He was the only spectator in the theater, he conceded, but Jesus, You know was nonetheless a "great movie."
Austria 2003 | 87 min | German | 35mm | 1:1,66
Director: Ulrich Seidl | Screenplay: Ulrich Seidl, Veronika Franz | Camera: Wolfgang Thaler, Jerzy Palacz | Sound: Ekkehart Baumung | Editors: Andrea Wagner, Christof Schertenleib | Casting: Anja Salomonowitz, Silvana Toneva | Assistant director: Veronika Franz | Unit manager: Anja Salomonowitz |Production manager: Max Linder | Producer: Martin Kraml | Cast: Elfriede Ahmad, Waltraute Bartel, Hans-Jürgen Eder, Thomas Ullram, Angelika Weber, Thomas Grandegger
Production company: MMKmedia | Kirchmeyergasse 9 | 1130 Vienna, Austria
T +43 1 955 15 15 | F +43 1 955 15 15 - 56 | E office@MMKmedia.com | www.MMKmedia.com
Austrian distributor: Filmladen Filmverleih GmbH | Mariahilfer Straße 58/7 | 1070 Vienna, Austria
T +43 1 52343620 | E firstname.lastname@example.org | www.filmladen.at
World sales: Coproduction Office | 24, rue Lamartine | 75009 Paris, France
T +33 1 56026000 | F +33 1 56026001 | E email@example.com | www.coproductionoffice.eu
With support from: ORF (Film/Fernseh-Abkommen) and Wiener Filmfonds | In Co-production with ARTE |
Funding from Niederösterreich Kultur and Land Niederösterreich
- Director's statement
"I didn't want to show the hypocrisy or fossilization, the neurosis or bigotry or kitsch of the Catholic church. What interested me was people's intimate prayer to God." – Ulrich Seidl
"It's Seidl's most rigorous work to date and one of his best: The form is self-reflexive, creating a parallel between the piety of confession and the self-exploitation concept of talkshows. The results are authentic accounts of solitude."
Christoph Huber, Die Presse
"Seidl isn't interested in voyeuristic entertainment. He doesn't attack the people he films, but rather those he draws in through his subjects."
Stefan Grissemann, Profil
"Seidl once again films in a (taboo) zone of the absolutely private – and thereby creates an authenticity that is painfully revealing. His direction is calculating, provocative and revealing – 88 minutes of film that get under our skin."
"The breaking of one of the last possible taboos."
- Awards | Festivals
"Best Documentary", Karlovy Vary, 2003
"Vienna Film Prize", Viennale, 2003
"Prix de l’Association québécoise des Critiques", 32nd Festival du Nouveau Cinéma, Montréal
"Erich-Neuberg-Preis", Vienna, 2003 (this prize, awarded by Austrian broadcaster ORF since 1980, is named after TV pioneer Erich Neuberg, whose 1961 TV adaptation Der Herr Karl provoked a scandal and made television history)
World premiere: 38th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, 2003
San Sebastian IFF, Kulturforum/Bucharest, Cineteca Nacional/Mexico, Motovun FF, Thessaloniki IFF, New Horizons IFF, Indielisboa, Deutsches Filminstitut, Austrian Cultural Forum
Pressphotos: 10x15cm / 300dpi / jpg / each ca 500kb
© Ulrich Seidl Filmproduktion