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Priest (1994)

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A homosexual Catholic priest finds out during confessional that a young girl is being sexually abused by her father, and has to decide how to deal with both that secret and his own.

Director:

Antonia Bird

Writer:

Jimmy McGovern
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4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Linus Roache ... Father Greg Pilkington
Tom Wilkinson ... Father Matthew Thomas
Robert Carlyle ... Graham
Cathy Tyson ... Maria Kerrigan
Lesley Sharp ... Mrs. Unsworth
Robert Pugh ... Mr. Unsworth
James Ellis James Ellis ... Father Ellerton
Christine Tremarco Christine Tremarco ... Lisa Unsworth
Paul Barber ... Charlie
Rio Fanning Rio Fanning ... Bishop
Jim R. Coleman Jim R. Coleman ... Funeral director
Bill Dean ... Altar boy
Gilly Coman Gilly Coman ... Ellie Molloy
Fred Pearson ... Patrick
Jimmy Gallagher Jimmy Gallagher ... Mick Molloy
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Storyline

Father Greg Pilkington (Linus Roache) is torn between his call as a conservative Catholic priest and his secret life as a homosexual with a gay lover, frowned upon by the Church. Upon hearing the confession of a young girl of her incestuous father, Greg enters an intensely emotional spiritual struggle deciding between choosing morals over religion and one life over another. Written by Eric Chor <spiritcircle@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In a world of rituals, in a place of secrets, a man must choose between keeping the faith and exposing the truth. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for depiction of mature themes involving sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 March 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Actos privados See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$4,176,932
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR | Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Antonia Bird was forced to cut a whole scene of Linus Roache's bare behind to ensure only an R rating in the USA, instead of a notorious NC-17. See more »

Goofs

Father Greg holds up a communion wafer which is smooth. The scene cuts to Graham and then back to Father Greg, and the wafer has a diagonal line across it. See more »

Quotes

Father Greg Pilkington: [Father Redstone has been addressing Father Pilkington in Latin] You've lost me, I'm afraid.
Father Redstone: I said: I know all about you. You're a boil on the body of Christ. A monstrous, living, breathing boil, ready to erupt at any moment into pus, and blood, and stench.
Father Greg Pilkington: I think I preferred it in Latin.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Screen Two: Priest (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

HE AIN'T HEAVY HE'S MY BROTHER
Composed by Bob Russell & Bobby Scott
Published by Harrison Music Corporation & Jenny Music
Administered by Chelsea Music Publishing Co. Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Very intelligent and beautiful piece of film making
20 May 2002 | by Bogey ManSee all my reviews

Priest, by Antonia Bird, is very beautiful and also provocative film about faith, church, forgiveness and tolerance, which all have as many shapes as there are human beings. The film tells the story of a priest who arrives to new town and soon he notices some things he don't consider too acceptable, and learns also that incredible and selfish evil lives inside every human being, including himself.

The film is a powerful study about religion and many ways to interpret and obey its orders. How can a priest do his "good" job as he is rotten and evil inside and there is always the chance of Sin lurking somewhere? The main point is that no human is purely good and without any flaws and everyone sins, priests too. The purification can be reach only by forgiving and being tolerant and loving towards others, and thus the peace of mind and happiness may be reached: trying to be as good as human being can. Forgiveness and love are the most important things and the film ends in extremely beautiful scene at the church, as at least one little person forgives the priest for his "crimes" and sees into the heart and soul of the priest. We cannot judge someone for something because there are no sinless people in the world. The narrow-mindedness is one problem the film deals with, and it is sad to see that these things take place in real life, too. The film is very deep and beautiful and also funny and it unfolds more and more with each viewing time. This should be seen by persons who "cannot forgive" someone for something he/she has done. What is the benefit people think they get by not forgiving someone and hating someone? As I mentioned, the power of love, forgiveness, and tolerance are the main themes of the film so there are no people in the world, who this film cannot be recommended. This is like Abel Ferrara's and his screenwriter's work, but not as fierce and relentless as their work. Priest is a little more restrained and "easier for everyone to watch" version of the themes of Ferrara and St. John.

Remarkable, beautiful, touching and forces the viewer to think. 9/10 masterpiece.


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