During the annual Good Friday pageant in a tiny Italian village local priest Don Vincenzo faces a crisis when the girl selected to play the Virgin Mary shows up pregnant.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Maddalena
...
Don Vincenzo
...
Giovanni Lamberti
Jacques Sernas ...
Giovanni Belloni
Folco Lulli ...
Domenico, il bovaro
Valentine Tessier ...
Geltrude
Isa Querio ...
Luisa
Patrizia De Filippo ...
figlioletta di Maddalena (as Patrizio Loretta De Filippi)
Bianca Doria ...
Rosa
Angiola Faranda ...
Figlia del bovaro
Assunta Radico ...
La moglie del bovaro
Germana Paolieri ...
Prostituta
Rosario Borelli ...
Un giovanotto del paese
Giovanni Martella ...
Rocco
Liliana Gerace ...
Altra prostituta
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Storyline

The story takes plays during the annual Good Friday pageant in a tiny Italian village. Local priest Don Vincenzo faces a crisis when the girl selected to play the Virgin Mary shows up pregnant. This turn of events is beneficial to business mogul Lamberti, who has been seeking out a way to discredit Don Vincenzo in the eyes of the villagers. Adding to the priest's headaches are the "stage parents" of the many applicants for the role of the Blessed Virgin. In desperation, Don Vincenzo decides to hire an outsider for the role -- ample opportunity for the villainous Lamberti to bring in a prostitute named Maddelena as the prime candidate. Through a series of unfortunate coincidences, poor Maddelena ends up as the tragic victim of mob rule and collective stupidity. Written by Ulf Kjell Gür

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

This is the Story of Maddalena ... a woman of the night ... who used her sex as a weapon against man and God ! See more »

Genres:

Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

16 March 1954 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Madalena  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Connections

Referenced in The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A story of corruption, redemption, hate, envy, miracle, faith, which gets straight to one's heart.
20 January 2011 | by (Italy) – See all my reviews

ATTENTION, SPOILERS – A great movie, in my opinion, by virtue both of direction and actors, as for the themes it deals with. The very title reminds of the story of the Magdalene of the gospels, a perverted woman, who was converted by knowing Jesus, and radically changed her life. What more, she was chosen by Jesus to be a witness of His resurrection. The Magdalene of this movie is very interesting: she is not only a prostitute who, by making that work, has learned to despise herself like her customers despise her, but she is also a woman who has a down on God because of the death of her child (a girl 7 or 8 years old). In real life she's not the only one who feels like that. Despite this, grace touches her heart many times in many ways, until her icy heart melts, her anger cools off, and she steps, in tears, to repentance. Though the director tells about conversion and repentance, about miracles and grace, does not shoot a movie of mushy feelings and honey. Evil exists, human nature was damaged by the original sin, and it would be hypocritical to deny or minimize it. In fact the people of the village are depicted in all their wretchedness and hypocrisy. Envy and pride reign over them, and the priest vainly tries to bring them back to a more Christian attitude. Gossiping is the favorite sport of the women. Furthermore, none of them seems to have learned from the gospel's episode where Jesus saves the adulteress from lapidation. Only an horrible and irreparable misdeed can open their eyes, and make them take off their hat. Even the slanderer realizes what he has done and repents. Very intense and touching is the scene where Magdalene dies among the arms of the priest. It is a very well made, well acted movie, shot through with real faith. We miss today catholic directors like Genina very much, because it is a long time that directors who declare themselves believers shoot fake, superficial, artificial movies, full of mushy feelings. This movie, instead, is very true and sincere.


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