Silence is Masahiro Shinoda's 1971 adaptation of the historical based novel by Shusaku Endo. Endo helped write the screenplay adaptation with Shindo. In fact, there is something of an all star support crew involved with the film since the cinemotographer was Kazuo Miyagawa (best knownn for Rashomon and Ugetsu), music was by Toru Takimitsu (Harakiri and Woman in the Dunes), and starred Eji Okada (Woman in the Dunes). This is the story of the persecution of Christians in 17th century Japan. So the main themes are faith, betrayal, and sacrifice. The magistrate test the Christians by making them engage in apostasy by treading on a image of the Virgin Mary. Those who refused were tortured-again all of this was historically based. Miyagawa's cinematography is engaging and enlightening for such a dour tale.