In honor of Women's History Month, the Movie of the Day series is back this week to highlight, what else, powerful women in history. So we start off with one of the oldest of those figures, Joan of Arc, explored here in Carl Theodor Dryer's masterpiece, The Passion of Joan of Arc. Yes, this is a silent film, but I encourage you to give it a chance, because if you do you'll be able to experience one of the most unforgettable performances in movie history, and that's Renee Jeanne Falconetti as Joan. She's filmed entirely in close-up and the power of her emotions is absolutely searing throughout the extension of her trial by the French judges. The film was based on the actual record of that famous trial and when you watch this movie you'll feel like you've been transported back the 15th century.
Instead of a trailer, and because as a silent film it probably needs a bit more selling, here's The New York Times Critics Pick for the film, recommended by A.O. Scott: