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Priest (1994)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  24 March 1995 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 7,593 users  
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Father Greg Pilkington (Linus Roache) is torn between his call as a conservative Catholic priest and his secret life as a homosexual with a gay lover, frowned upon by the Church. Upon ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Cathy Tyson ...
Mrs. Unsworth
Mr. Unsworth
James Ellis ...
Father Ellerton
Lisa Unsworth
Rio Fanning ...
Jim R. Coleman ...
Funeral director
Bill Dean ...
Altar boy
Gilly Coman ...
Ellie Molloy
Fred Pearson ...
Jimmy Gallagher ...
Mick Molloy


Father Greg Pilkington (Linus Roache) is torn between his call as a conservative Catholic priest and his secret life as a homosexual with a gay lover, frowned upon by the Church. Upon hearing the confession of a young girl of her incestuous father, Greg enters an intensely emotional spiritual struggle deciding between choosing morals over religion and one life over another. Written by Eric Chor <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

girl | love | church | priest | abuse | See All (224) »


One man is about to challenge two thousand years of tradition. See more »


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for depiction of mature themes involving sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

24 March 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Actos privados  »

Box Office


$4,176,932 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Director Antonia Bird cut a scene of Linus Roache's bare buttocks to ensure only an R rating in the USA. See more »


Father Greg holds up a communion wafer which is smooth. The scene cuts to Graham and then back to Father Greg, and the wafer has a diagonal line across it. See more »


Father Greg Pilkington: And how would you feel if someone robbed your car?
Boy Car Thief: I haven't got one.
Father Greg Pilkington: Well, suppose you did.
Boy Car Thief: I'd get a weed-on.
Father Greg Pilkington: Exactly. I'd get a... weed-on too.
Boy Car Thief: You haven't got a car.
Father Greg Pilkington: Well, what about Father Matthew?
Boy Car Thief: No one would wanna rob his car, would they?
Father Greg Pilkington: Because he's a priest?
Boy Car Thief: Because it's crap!
See more »


Referenced in 3rd Rock from the Sun: Frozen Dick (1996) See more »


Composed by Mauricio Venegas
Published by Fireworks Music Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

Moving and powerful
13 June 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A young handsome Catholic priest Father Greg (Linus Roache) starts at a new parish in London. He butts heads with the older and more lenient Father Matthew (Tom Wilkinson) but they become friends. But Greg is gay and sneaks out to gay bars to meet men. He meets up with Graham (Robert Carlyle) and they fall in love--but Greg feels guilty about it. Also a young girl tells him in confession that her father is sexually using her--but he can't tell anybody. Slowly these two issues start to drive him crazy...

Excellent drama. This was attacked by the Catholic church (who didn't see it) as being anti-Catholic. Director Antonia Bird said she wasn't trying to blast the Catholic church--and she doesn't! She's pointing out some issues that the Catholic church has and should be dealt with. The church is not demonized--they show the good and the bad. The film is well-written--I never thought theological discussions could be interesting but they are! Also they don't pull back--there is some extreme anti-gay language but it is needed for the story. The sex scenes between Carlyle and Roache are pretty tame though--especially in the American version where they're edited (stupid censors!).

The acting is superb. Carlyle is just excellent: Wilkinson was also good but Roache is just incredible. You see the pain in his face and feel his struggle trying to reconcile his faith with his orientation. The most powerful sequence comes when he breaks down in front of a cross begging God to help him.

I don't want to make it sound like this is all gloom and doom. There are some very funny moments mixed in too. The ending is sad but realistic (unfortunately). A powerful and moving film. A must-see. 10 all the way.

15 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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