5.6/10
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Sanctuary of Fear (1979)

Not Rated | | Drama, Thriller | TV Movie 23 April 1979
A Manhattan priest with a penchant for solving crimes goes to the aid of a young actress. She is becoming enmeshed in a series of bizarre incidents she can't explain, and her complaints to the police have gone ignored.

Writers:

Gordon Cotler (teleplay), G.K. Chesterton (stories) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Barnard Hughes ... Father Brown
Michael McGuire ... Lieutenant Bellamy
George Hearn ... Monsignor Kerrigan
Robert Schenkkan ... Father Wembley
David Rasche ... Jack Collins
Fred Gwynne ... Judge Potter
Elizabeth Wilson ... Mrs. Glidden
Kay Lenz ... Carol Bain
Peter Maloney ... Eli Clay
Saul Rubinek ... Jerry Stone
Jeffrey DeMunn ... Whitney Fowler
Donald Symington Donald Symington ... Russell Heyman
Maureen Silliman Maureen Silliman ... Beth Landau
Alice Drummond ... Grace Barringer
Thomas Hill ... Carl Barringer
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Storyline

Father Brown is an amiable Manhattan parish priest with a bent for crime solving who comes to the aid of a young actress who is innocently embroiled in a series of bizarre incidents and cannot find a sympathetic ear amoung the police. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 April 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Father Brown, Detective See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the pilot film for a proposed "Father Brown" series, with G.K. Chesterton's sacred sleuth transported from England to New York City. The series never came to fruition and all that remains is this pilot. See more »

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User Reviews

 
A shameful crime perpetrated on Chesterton's Father Brown.
7 August 2001 | by awalter1See all my reviews

A young woman is being stalked by a devious lowlife who tries to make her think she's losing her mind before he reveals his full plans. Fortunately the woman has the kindly priest-sleuth Father Brown to solve the mystery for her.

"Sanctuary of Fear" plays to the typical American made-for-television mystery formula of "Perry Mason" and "Murder She Wrote," and does so poorly. While the mood of the film is mildly promising at the start, it is all downhill from there... all the way to the preposterous and laughably melodramatic denouement. Worse, the only actor who shows talent in the entire film is Barnard Hughes as Father Brown.

One wonders why the filmmakers even bothered to invoke G. K. Chesterton's Father Brown character for this film. They have transported the good Father from England to New York, made him an American, and left not a single recognizable personality trait. Nor does the story contain even the smallest attempt at a metaphysical subtext of the sort common to Chesterton's stories. Was Chesterton's character so popular in the late 1970s that it would draw any kind of audience among television viewers, and would that audience have been satisfied with this drivel?


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