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Léon Morin, Priest (1961)

Léon Morin, prêtre (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 22 September 1961 (France)
Set during occupied France, a faithless woman finds herself falling in love with a young priest.

Writers:

(based on the novel by) (as Béatrice Beck), (adaptation)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Barny (as Emmanuele Riva)
Irène Tunc ...
Nicole Mirel ...
Gisèle Grimm ...
Marco Behar ...
Edelman (as Marco Béhar de la Comédie Française)
Monique Bertho ...
Marion
Marc Eyraud ...
(as Marc Heyraud)
Nina Grégoire ...
(as Nina Gregoire)
Monique Hennessy ...
Arlette
Edith Loria
Micheline Schererre
Renée Liques
Simone Vannier
Lucienne Marchand
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Storyline

In World War II, the widow Barny sees the Italian soldiers arriving in occupied Saint Bernard while walking to her job. Barny lives with her daughter and works correcting tests and feels a great attraction toward her boss Sabine. When the Germans arrive, Barny sends her half-Jewish daughter to live in a farm in the countryside and finds that Sabine's brother has been arrested and sent to a concentration camp. The atheist Barny decides to baptize her daughter to protect her and chooses priest Léon Morin to discuss with him themes related to religion and Catholicism and Léon lends books to her. Barny converts to the Catholicism and becomes closer to Léon, feeling an unrequited desire for him. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

22 September 1961 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Léon Morin, Priest  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$9,515 (USA) (19 April 2009)

Gross:

$40,998 (USA) (9 June 2017)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (2003 re-release) | | (4K Restored Version)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is included on Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" list. See more »

Connections

Remade as La grande collection: Léon Morin, prêtre (1991) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Underrated Masterpiece
3 May 2015 | by (Recife, Brazil) – See all my reviews

A lot of independent foreign movies released in the 1960's and 1970's have gained more attention and admiration of moviegoers, but unfortunately this film so far has not received the treatment it deserves. Barny is a newly widowed and atheist woman who sees the Italian soldiers arriving in occupied Saint Bernard while walking to her job. She lives with her daughter and work in a school. One day, she decides to confront the priest Léon Morin about catholicism and religion, but she is surprised by the priest's response. The whole movie is seen by the protagonist's point of view Barny (played by the stunning Emmanuelle Riva), making a very female movie (even so the film can be enjoyed by both men and women), the film shows religion in two ways, never becoming a Catholic or atheist movie, and it can be admired by people of any religion (and even those who do not believe or follow any religion). The performances are excellent, specially by Emmanuelle Riva, who is completely devoted to her role, and Jean-Paul Belmondo, who gives a great and unusual performance for his career (Breathless, Pierrot le Fou, ...). The interaction that these characters have is one of the best in film history, they are two completely different people, Barny(Emmanuelle Riva)is an insecure woman about her feelings, but Léon Morin (Jean-Paul Belmondo), the priest, unlike her, he is a very secure man, even if these characters have different thoughts, they have admiration for each other in common, and the best is that the interaction and admiration of them are believable. This movie portrays the faith (or no faith) of a person during the war and sexual desires delicately and unusual and the film also has an excellent character study. "Léon Morin Priest" is a unusual movie and still original, it is hardly controversial as other films that talk about religion and becomes as good as these and it is a movie that can be enjoyed by people of all religions or no religion.


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