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The Papal Chase (2004)

E  -  Documentary  -  June 2005 (USA)
7.5
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The Papal Chase is a guerrilla documentary feature that captures one man's obsession to meet the Pope in order to win a $1000 bet. With appearances by The Rolling Stones and Pope John Paul II.

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The Papal Chase is a feature-length guerrilla documentary that captures one man's obsession to meet the Pope in order to win a bet. The Pope is visiting Canada and Kenny's friend has bet him $1000 that he can't meet 'his holiness'. Kenny's a maniac, a non-believer, totally lacking any form of spirituality, he is overly determined to win the cash, but he has only six days to redeem himself. In his attempt to meet 'the most heavily guarded man in the world' Kenny becomes a Pope-arazzi, fighting his way through millions of pilgrims and onlookers, thousands of cops, security guards, Vatican Special Forces, precision snipers, the media and 2 million religious zealots. Over the 6-day period, Kenny becomes slightly catholicised, beginning to search not only for the Pope, but an understanding of God. His religious quest is a fascinating glimpse into contemporary global faith and Papal celebrity. Hotz's irreverent, often confrontational style explores the limits of personal freedom and ... Written by Anonymous

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The papal chase
26 February 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Winner of the Best Canadian Film Award at the Whistler Film Festival, The Papal Chase follows director Kenny Hotz's hilarious quest to meet the Pope. When a friend bets him $1,000 he can't meet the Pope during his 2001 visit to Toronto, Hotz accepts, figuring it will be an easy task. He soon discovers fake press credentials and charm can only get you so close to the world's most heavily guarded person. An irreverent story of faith, obsession, and one man's devout attempt to win the toughest bet of his life, The Papal Chase is as provocative as it is farcical.

Disguised in persona's that include a Brazilian priest, a gay Hispanic DJ, and Satan himself, Hotz ( Pitch , CBC's Kenny Vs. Spenny ) stretches the limits of freedom of speech during the 2001 World Youth Day celebrations, talking his way through millions of zealous pilgrims, annoyed cops, suspicious security guards, ominous snipers, and the international media. With a light touch, Hotz examines such issues as the power of faith and the existence of God. Absurd, hysterical, and often contentious, you can't help but pull for this self-proclaimed "Pope-arazzi" to come face to face with the closest man to God.

-Andrew Gurney


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