7.5/10
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The Mission (1986)

Eighteenth century Spanish Jesuits try to protect a remote South American tribe in danger of falling under the rule of pro-slavery Portugal.

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(original story & screenplay)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Bercelio Moya ...
Sigifredo Ismare ...
Witch Doctor
Asuncion Ontiveros ...
Indian Chief
Alejandrino Moya ...
Chief's Lieutenant
Daniel Berrigan ...
Rolf Gray ...
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Storyline

Jeremy Irons plays a Spanish Jesuit who goes into the South American wilderness to build a mission in the hope of converting the Indians of the region. Robert DeNiro plays a slave hunter who is converted and joins Irons in his mission. When Spain sells the colony to Portugal, they are forced to defend all they have built against the Portuguese aggressors. Written by mattbballman17

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Deep in the jungles of South America two men bring civilization to a native tribe. Now, after years of struggle together, they find themselves on opposite sides in a dramatic fight for the natives' independence. One will trust in the power of prayer. One will believe in the might of the sword.


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

31 October 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La misión  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$24,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$40,366, 31 October 1986, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$17,218,023
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of several period cinema films that Jeremy Irons starred in during his early career. The pictures include Nijinsky (1980), The Mission (1986), The Wild Duck (1984), Swann in Love (1984) ("Swann in Love"), and The French Lieutenant's Woman (1981). See more »

Goofs

When Gabriel slips on the rocks near the beginning, climbing shoes are briefly visible before we once again see Gabriel climbing barefoot. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Altamirano: Your Holiness, the little matter that brought me here to the furthest edge of your light on Earth is now settled. The Indians are once more free to be enslaved by the Spanish and Portuguese settlers. I don't think that's hitting the right note. Begin again... Your Holiness, I write to you in this year of Our Lord 1758 from the southern continent of the Americas, from the town of Asunción, in the Province of La Plata, two weeks march from the great mission of San Miguel. These ...
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Crazy Credits

At the film's very end, after the final credits, Altimarano gives the audience an ambiguous, almost accusing look, as if he were asking it, "Would you or would you not have done this?" See more »

Connections

Featured in The 59th Annual Academy Awards (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Gabriel's Oboe
Composed by Ennio Morricone
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of the great epic historical films of all time
27 May 2001 | by See all my reviews

In `The Mission' Roland Joffé has succeeded in putting together one of the most majestic visual adventures of all time: and a story that had to be told. Chris Menges' sumptuous photography is a feast, such that – for once – the Newsweek quotation on the video cover is superbly apt: `a sweeping spectacle'. The whole film is breathtaking: from the depths of the jungle to the indian villages, from face close-ups to broad panoramas, the visual effects are so powerful that I just cannot think of any other comparable film. Add to that fine interpretations, carefully considered and delivered performances by all concerned with Joffé's exquisite direction, and you have a guarantee of a magnificent production. But that is NOT all there is to this great film: Ennio Morricone's music reaches its greatest power, its most poignant intensity, its most gratifying melodic line, right here in `The Mission', surpassing everything this Italian composer had ever done before – even with his great friend, Sergio Leone. Here Morricone reaches symphonic levels in a wealth of melodic harmonies, such that what is supposedly `only' a visual attraction – a film – becomes also a delight to the ears, bringing a lump to my throat at various moments through this genuinely mighty film. You might wish to compare this film with `1492: a Conquest of Paradise' (1992) in which the best of Vangelis can be heard; but even so, I rate `The Mission' just ahead of `1492'. Both films highly recommendable.


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