6.8/10
74
2 user 3 critic

The Calling (2009)

Joanna - a university student - leaves her course to become a nun.

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Sister Ignatious
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Joanna
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The Prioress
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Sister Gertrude
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Trish
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Vivie
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
David Bark-Jones ...
Vince
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Eddie
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Nun
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Sister Ambrose
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Sister Hilda
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The Bishop
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Father Kieren
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Sister Kevin
Eleanor Charlotte Stewart ...
Sister Ignatious's Granddaughter
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Storyline

Joanna is about to graduate from University with her whole life set up for her but she has decided to face up to a truth she has been avoiding her whole life. Since she was small, she has had the desire to become a Nun. She is set on joining a closed order of Benedictines. Her best friend cannot believe it, her boyfriend is devastated and her mother feels it's just a phase. The only encouragement she gets is from the family's religious housekeeper, Consuela. When she finally gets to the convent, the liberalism of a politically active Novice Sister, Ignatious and a bunch of women with border-line mental illness, including a psychotic Mother Superior, an alcoholic football fan in charge of the vineyard, an over-pious floor mopper, Sister Hilda to name a few at first makes her wonder if she's following the right path after all but as she gets to know the Sisters and the enormous community bond they all share and the spiritual love that connects them she starts to see glimpses of her own ... Written by Anonymous

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You enter for one reason, you stay for another.

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Comedy | Drama

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Release Date:

23 April 2010 (UK)  »

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Trivia

Dunn cast all her nuns before writing the screenplay specifically writing the characters for the ensemble cast of women. She is building a reputation for writing interesting characters for women. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not a Good Film...
1 July 2010 | by See all my reviews

I saw this film at the 2009 Cambridge Film Festival and at the time it made me very angry, almost (but not quite) angry enough to walk out. I had been intrigued and attracted by the scenario, ostensibly tackling the respectable issue of how a young person can recognise a religious calling in today's secular Britain, but (in my opinion) this promising set-up was betrayed in almost all respects and the result, I felt, was a dreadful film, a waste of money, talent and time. Upon arriving home I wrote a scathing assessment for the Festival web-site, upon which this review is based.

Where to start. The story turned out to be a completely over-the top amalgam of all the religious-community based melodramatic excesses you have seen before. The script was abysmal, unable to decide if it was drama, humour or what? It was certainly farcical. The direction was technically adequate, but no more. Strangely, the relentless clarity and brightness of the DV image made things worse, not better, and I thought that film score composers had moved on from the mandatory use of the bassoon to underline moments of comic effect.

I came out of the screening with two questions circling in my mind: how on earth did such an array of prestigious British acting talent come to be associated with this project? And how did the funding agencies ever imagine it was a good idea? Interestingly, my Film Festival review appeared alongside a couple of others which took a completely opposite view! This left me thinking maybe I had totally missed the point of the film. Maybe it was some kind of post-modern, post-feminist, ironic celebration of the choices available to women in 2009 Britain. But if this was the case, it was far too clever for me....


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