The British Film Institute presents the best global cinema on-demand:
From classic and contemporary films to the best of the BFI National Archive.

The Passion of Joan of Arc


This film is certified

Please confirm that you accept our terms of use.


The Passion of Joan of Arc 1927 PG

80 mins France Director. Carl Th. Dreyer

An unassailable giant of silent cinema, Carl Dreyer's deeply moving biopic features one of the most desperate, brilliant performances ever captured in cinema’s history. Actress Renée Falconetti, as the 19 year old Joan condemned to death, was brutally forced by Dreyer to kneel on stone to show the pain on her face. Few films since have used close-ups as intensely and overwhelmingly.

The Passion of Joan of Arc remains an unassailable giant of early cinema, a transcendental film comprising tears, fire and madness that relies on extreme close-ups of the human face. Renée Falconetti was 35 when she played the role of Joan (a teenager when condemned to death in 1431). Dreyer brutally extracted a desperate, brilliant performance from the actress, forcing her to kneel on stone to show the pain on her face and insisting that they shot in silence. In the 2012 S&S poll, Joan had risen to no. 9. But in 2010 it was designated the most influential film of all time in the Toronto International Film Festival’s ‘Essential 100’ list, where Jonathan Rosenbaum described it as “the pinnacle of silent cinema – and perhaps of the cinema itself”.

Start watching in: 30 days

Finish watching in: 48 hours

Directed by

Carl Th. Dreyer


Renée Falconetti

Eugène-Charles-Joseph Silvain

Maurice Schutz

Louis Ravet


Historical drama Biopic


Sight and Sound Greatest Films Poll


PG Contains mild violence







Read lessRead more

Explore further

View Beyond the Hills
Beyond the Hills
Watch from £2.98 150 mins

Beyond the Hills 2013 12

Cristian Mungiu's scarily plausible drama about a nun's friend suffering for her love in a nunnery; obsession and superstition wreak havoc.

150 mins Director. Cristian Mungiu

View Lourdes
Watch from £2.98

Lourdes 2009 U

Jessica Hausner’s cool, compassionate exploration of religious faith follows various believers and non-believers hoping for miracle cures in Lourdes

96 mins Director. Jessica Hausner

View Stations of the Cross
Stations of the Cross
Watch from £3.83

Stations of the Cross 2014 15

A teenage girl defies her Catholic parents and embarks on her own campaign of religious fervour, in this award-winning drama composed of just 14 scenes to mirror Biblical tableaux.

107 mins Germany Director. Dietrich Brüggemann


View All

Welcome to a new subscription service like no other.

>100s of hand-picked classics and critically-acclaimed films

>Critic Mark Kermode picks a must-see film every week

>No contract, cancel anytime

Cookies Policy

This website uses cookies, as explained in our Cookies Policy.

To accept the terms and hide this message please click 'I accept'.

I accept

Passionate about film? So are we…

Don't miss the email made for the in-the-know film fan:

New releases — on the same day as in cinemas Special collections & unheralded classics Exclusive news on discounts

Never ask | Ask me later