6.2/10
1,760
21 user 6 critic

The Missionary (1982)

R | | Comedy | 5 November 1982 (USA)
In 1905, after 10 years of missionary work in Africa, the Rev. Charles Fortesque is recalled to England, where his bishop gives him his new assignment - to minister to London's prostitutes.... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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The Reverend Fitzbanks
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Ada
Valerie Whittington ...
Emmeline
Roland Culver ...
Lord Fermleigh
Rosamund Greenwood ...
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Parswell
Neil Innes ...
Singer in Gin Palace
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Old Man outside Hotel
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Storyline

In 1905, after 10 years of missionary work in Africa, the Rev. Charles Fortesque is recalled to England, where his bishop gives him his new assignment - to minister to London's prostitutes. Charles hopes Deborah, his fiancee, will object and give him an excuse to say no to the bishop. But she is so imperturbably innocent that she totally fails to understand what he is being asked to do, and urges him to do his best. Wealthy Lady Ames is expected to fund the work, but once she makes it clear to Charles that there will be no contribution unless he shares her bed... Written by James Barrett <jbarrett@sbastk.ess.sunysb.edu>

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Taglines:

He gave his body to save their souls. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

5 November 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A misszionárius  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,864,852, 7 November 1982, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$7,241,180
See more on IMDbPro »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Palin has said on the audio-commentary that his scenes as the missionary with Michael Hordern as the butler may be the best ones he has ever appeared in. See more »

Quotes

Reverend Fortescue: I'm going to remain a missionary.
Deborah Fitzbanks: But I thought...
Reverend Fortescue: A missionary IN ENGLAND!
Deborah Fitzbanks: But everyone's ENGLISH in England.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Pay close attention to the photo album during the end credits, the photos reveal details about the characters after the events of the film. See more »

Connections

References Chariots of Fire (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Put On Your Ta-Ta Little Girlie
Written and Composed by Fred W. Leigh
Sung by Neil Innes
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User Reviews

 
Is it OK to laugh at this?
21 June 2008 | by See all my reviews

I really like this film. It's just one of those films that bring a smile to your face. There are some fantastic moments: Roland Culver dying while Michael Palin obliviously continues with his speech, Michael Hordern as the butler who doesn't know where he's going, Michael Palin being propositioned by a lady of the night (and accepting). It's just a very charming film.

One thing that did strike me about it though is how we find situations acceptable if they are transported into the past. I don't think it would be considered very funny to make a film in which a Reverend lets three child prostitutes into his bed at once if it was set in today's London. We can laugh about the hypocritical sexual shenanigans of the Victorians though. Paedophilia's funny as long as it's in the distant past.


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