Movie Reviews

First Reformed (2018)

first-reformed-movie-poster-2018Director: Paul Schrader

Genre: Drama, Thriller

Runtime: 113 Minutes

Main Cast: Amanda Seyfried, Ethan Hawke, Cedric the Entertainer, Michael Gaston, Victoria Hill, Van Hansis, Philip Ettinger

Plot: Reverend Toller is the pastor of the small historic First Reformed Church in upstate New York. The church is celebrating it’s upcoming two hundred and fiftieth anniversary very soon, and whilst preparing for the celebrations, Toller’s faith and wellbeing are threatened by tragic events.

My Thoughts: First Reformed seems to be the movie that every blogger is talking about at the moment, and I’m not one to stray away from the bandwagon, so I gave it a watch at the first opportunity I could get. I tried not to read too much about it beforehand because it seemed like one of those kind of movies.

I’ll tell you what kind of movie it is. It’s the kind that makes you go ‘WHAT?!’ at the end of it, and instead of sleeping that night, you run through your head what it all means until you end up putting yourself into an existential crisis. Safe to say, I had a lot of caffeine to get me through the following day.

Whilst I love a movie that makes me think, I’m not religious at all and so I found a lot of the movie hard to understand. If I were though, I could absolutely see First Reformed being one of my favourite movies of the year. It’s powerful stuff, that’s for sure.


Best Bit: The growing relationship between Toller and Mary. They are both in so much pain, yet they give so much to help each other. Their friendship is what kept me going through the movie, as it’s quite slow.

Worst Bit: This will only make sense if you’ve seen the movie but, the floating scene. That’s where I crossed the line between barely understanding everything and accepting this movie wasn’t really made for me.

Fun Trivia: Writer/director Paul Schrader stated in a Q&A at Rotterdam Film Festival 2018 that he was surprised while editing the film to notice how many similarities there were with Taxi Driver, a film he also wrote.

My Rating: 3 and a half out of 5 glasses of whiskey, that you should really avoid if you have health issues, and most definitely not mix with Pepto Bismol.


11 thoughts on “First Reformed (2018)

  1. I had never heard of this movie until Sati mentioned how much she loves it. I’ll be checking it out soon too. I think it comes out on the 21st here.

    Though floating…ugh, is it like The Revenant and Tree of Life floating because I can not with that.


    1. Same here! It’s like this year’s Snowpiercer for me, if it weren’t for the bloggers I would have never heard of it.
      It kind of is…but I don’t want to put you off before you’ve even seen it!


    1. Thank you so much! It’s something I’ve only recently started doing as I was struggling with creativity when writing. It’s really helped me to focus on what to talk about and it’s a lot of fun for me, too 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice review. Just finished up writing about this one and it was tougher to put together my thoughts than expected. It really plays with your expectations. I ended up seeing it a second time before even trying to write about it.


  3. I am not entirely sure faith and religion have bearing on understanding the film. Hawke’s character doesnt loose faith he just reshapes its meaning. I am religious but not Christian it had no influence on my enjoyment here. Anyways sorry it didnt work for you!


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