Jeremy Irons plays a Spanish Jesuit who goes into the South American wilderness to build a mission in the hope of converting the Indians of the region. Robert De Niro plays a slave hunter who is converted and joins the Jesuit in his mission. When Spain sells the colony to Portugal, they are forced to defend all they have built against the Portuguese aggressors.Written by
Deep in the jungles of South America two men bring civilization to a native tribe. Now, after years of struggle together, they find themselves on opposite sides in a dramatic fight for the natives' independence. One will trust in the power of prayer. One will believe in the might of the sword.
This was the only Best Picture Oscar nominee that year not to be nominated in any of the writing categories. See more »
Near the end, when Father Gabriel marches with the Indigenous as the Portuguese are shooting, one elderly indigenous woman in front of Father Gabriel is shot. Blood bursts onto her white loin cloth. She keeps marching, suggesting that she missed her cue. See more »
Your Holiness, the little matter that brought me here to the furthest edge of your light on Earth is now settled. The Indians are once more free to be enslaved by the Spanish and Portuguese settlers. I don't think that's hitting the right note. Begin again... Your Holiness, I write to you in this year of Our Lord 1758 from the southern continent of the Americas, from the town of Asunción, in the Province of La Plata, two weeks march from the great mission of San Miguel. These ...
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At the film's very end, after the final credits, Altimarano gives the audience an ambiguous, almost accusing look, as if he were asking it, "Would you or would you not have done this?" See more »
One of the great epic historical films of all time
In `The Mission' Roland Joffé has succeeded in putting together one of the most majestic visual adventures of all time: and a story that had to be told. Chris Menges' sumptuous photography is a feast, such that for once the Newsweek quotation on the video cover is superbly apt: `a sweeping spectacle'. The whole film is breathtaking: from the depths of the jungle to the indian villages, from face close-ups to broad panoramas, the visual effects are so powerful that I just cannot think of any other comparable film. Add to that fine interpretations, carefully considered and delivered performances by all concerned with Joffé's exquisite direction, and you have a guarantee of a magnificent production. But that is NOT all there is to this great film: Ennio Morricone's music reaches its greatest power, its most poignant intensity, its most gratifying melodic line, right here in `The Mission', surpassing everything this Italian composer had ever done before even with his great friend, Sergio Leone. Here Morricone reaches symphonic levels in a wealth of melodic harmonies, such that what is supposedly `only' a visual attraction a film becomes also a delight to the ears, bringing a lump to my throat at various moments through this genuinely mighty film. You might wish to compare this film with `1492: a Conquest of Paradise' (1992) in which the best of Vangelis can be heard; but even so, I rate `The Mission' just ahead of `1492'. Both films highly recommendable.
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