The images of the mourners in St. Peter's Square at the beginning and the end of the movie are real newsreel footage. The images of John Paul's return to Poland, the reports of the assassination attempt, and the images from World Youth Day in Paris are also real footage. See more »
On 13 December 1981, the Pope is informed by the cardinals about the introduction of martial law in Poland. When he asks for fatalities, he is told about nine miners shot at the Wujek coal mine - an example of clairvoyancy, since the shooting at Wujek took place three days later, on 16 December 1981. See more »
What was this supposed to be, a 1910s western movie?
A real shame. Such important and complex figure as John Paul II deserves a good movie about him; unfortunately, this one did not come anywhere near that.
Piotr Adamczyk gives his best efforts, but even the master violinist wouldn't give too impressive performance when given very poorly written concerto. Essentially, the movie jumps from one episode to another, being a collection of small pieces rather than a cohesive unity; in effect, this leaves the viewer increasingly bored as the movie progresses, as there is nothing really interesting here.
But what hurts the movie the most is the ultimate polarization of characters. The Pope is always good, smiling, charismatic, wise, - put in any positive adjective and it will definitely fit in. The baddies are always cold and cynical. Such polarization gives the viewer the impression of watching an old 1910s silent western: with the Sheriff always cleanly shaven and wearing stainless white coat and the bad guys always bearded and wearing black. Of course, all the controversies concerning the Pope are absent: he is perfect human being, and so, becomes a cardboard cut-out rather than a live character, far from the complex, rich personality the Pope in reality was. In fact, the same can be said about virtually every character, with one notable exception.
The ironic twist of the movie is that the only character that sticks to the viewer's mind is the infamous Mehmet Ali Agca: somehow, he is the only character in the movie that seems to be human, of flesh and bones. And the scene where he assembles his handgun and prepares for his mission is the high point of the entire movie: suddenly, some life is breathed into a lifeless parade of clichés and cardboard cut-outs. Sad. 2/10.
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