In 1917, three shepherd children living just outside Fatima, Portugal have visions of a lovely lady in a cloud. The anticlerical government wishes to squelch the Church; reports of ... See full summary »
Set in a futuristic vision of the late 1980's, Ukrainian Archbishop Kiril Lakota is set free after two decades as a political prisoner in Siberia. He is brought to Rome by Fr. David ... See full summary »
After the war, Matt Gordon returns to Singapore to retrieve a fortune in smuggled pearls. Arrived, he reminisces in flashback about his prewar fiancée, alluring Linda, and her disappearance... See full summary »
In 1858 France, Bernadette, an adolescent peasant girl, has a vision of "a beautiful lady" in the city dump. She never claims it to be anything other than this, but the townspeople all ... See full summary »
Mike and Tony Petrakis are a Greek father and son team who dive for sponges off the coast of Florida. After they are robbed by crooks, Arnold and the Rhys brothers, Mike decides to take his... See full summary »
Marcelino is an orphan who grows up in a monastery. One day when he eats his small meal in a room full of old things he gives a piece of his bread to an old wooden Jesus figure - and indeed... See full summary »
Philip Marlowe gets involved when limp-wristed and snidely Leslie Murdock steals a rare doubloon from his mother to give to a newsreel photographer in exchange for film that is being used ... See full summary »
In 1917, three shepherd children living just outside Fatima, Portugal have visions of a lovely lady in a cloud. The anticlerical government wishes to squelch the Church; reports of religious experiences are cause for serious concern. Yet the children stand by their story, and the message of peace and hope the Lady brings. In the last vision, attended by thousands of people, the Lady proves her reality with a spectacular miracle that is seen by everyone present. Based on actual events at Fatima in the summer of 1917. Written by
Molly Malloy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on March 30, 1953 with Susan Whitney reprising her film role. J. Carrol Naish, the uncredited narrator of the film, also appeared on the radio broadcast. He disguised his rich voice and spoke with a heavy accent in order to play Hugo, the role that Gilbert Roland plays in the film. See more »
The Lady told Lucia to learn how to read and write so she could spread God's message. When the administrator took them away in his car, Lucia was able to read a signpost indicating that they were going to the next town. See more »
Although the religious aspects of The Miracle Of Our Lady Of Fatima story stuck pretty much to the established story, the political dynamics were tailored very much for the Cold War. It was a case of a lot of mutual needs being met.
In 1910 the Braganza-Coburg dynasty was overthrown in a revolution which plunged Portugal into a great deal of political turmoil until Antonio Salazar took power in 1926. The revolution that threw out the monarchy was anti-clerical in nature, that is true enough, but it was hardly the nascent Marxist state that is depicted in The Miracle Of Our Lady Of Fatima. That was done to meet Cold War needs.
The Roman Catholic Church under Pius XII and Antonio Salazar's Portugese state were staunchly anti-Communists. Portugal, neutral in World War II was now a member of NATO. It was under Salazar who was a former Seminarian and religious Catholic that the Fatima legend was spread and tourism to the site of Fatima was encouraged and the story really took off from there. The film helped the Salazar regime and most assuredly encouraged Portugese tourism.
But as to the story itself, if we believe it, like Bernadette of Soubirous, three pious Catholic youths, a brother and sister and their cousin were given a vision of the blessed Virgin Mary and an insight into what the future holds for God's creations on this planet. And on October 13, 1917 a sign was given from the heaven's themselves to confirm the truth of the children's story.
The three children, Sammy Ogg, Sherry Jackson, and Susan Whitney give deeply felt and sincere performances. Frank Silvera plays the administrator of the town and a sinister individual indeed, personifying the anti-clerical regime of the time. The skeptical folks of the time is personified by Gilbert Roland, friend of the children who is not a person of faith by any means, but the protector of the kids when they need one.
Roland is one of my favorite character actors from the golden age of the cinema. He has enough cheerful Latin charm for a dozen people and he's never boring in any film. He's reason enough to watch the film even if you are skeptical in matters of faith.
The younger two children played by Ogg and Jackson died during the great influenza epidemic post World War I. Susan Whitney's character Lucia Dos Santos became a nun and was revered as a living saint in the Roman Catholic community until her death at the ripe old age of 97 just a few years ago. Whitney's performance though good was hardly rewarded with an Oscar the way Jennifer Jones's was for playing St. Bernadette. The Miracle Of Our Lady Of Fatima did in fact get one Oscar nomination, one of several Max Steiner got for his musical score.
In 2001 I was touring Portugal and visited Fatima. A place more isolated and remote you can hardly imagine. But other than the giant cathedral there, pictured at the end of the film, and the various little shops selling religious articles, the place has kept the character of what it was in 1917. No one is going to put up a Fatima Hilton there, it would ruin the place altogether.
For Roman Catholics the film is a matter of faith. For film fans it's not a bad telling of a strange and beautiful story.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?