21 user 14 critic

Molokai (1999)

Molokai: The Story of Father Damien (original title)
2:09 | Trailer

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The true story of the 19th century priest who volunteered to go to the island of Molokai, to console and care for the lepers.


Paul Cox


John Briley, Hilde Eynikel (book)
1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Keanu Kapuni-Szasz Keanu Kapuni-Szasz ... Malulani
David Wenham ... Father Damien
Jan Kleinejan Jan Kleinejan ... White Officer
Michael W. Perry ... Dr. Trousseau
Aden Young ... Dr. Kalewis
Sam Neill ... Prime Minister Gibson
William Lebus William Lebus ... Reverend Appleyard
Derek Jacobi ... Father Leonor Fousnel
Leo McKern ... Bishop Maigret
Curtis Crabbe ... Amon
Kris Kristofferson ... Rudolph Meyer
Peter O'Toole ... William Williamson
Randy Fyjimori Randy Fyjimori ... Kaho'ohuli
Richard Marks Richard Marks ... Verger
Ryan Rumbaugh Ryan Rumbaugh ... Little Bishop


The true story of the 19th century priest who volunteered to go to the island of Molokai, to console and care for the lepers.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements, some violence, brief sensuality and mild language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



English | Latin | Hawaiian | French

Release Date:

17 March 1999 (Belgium) See more »

Also Known As:

Molokai See more »

Filming Locations:

Honolulu, O'ahu, Hawaii, USA See more »


Box Office


€7,436,800 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Leo McKern's final credited film role. He makes an uncredited appearance in The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001). See more »


Father Damien: No, I want it true. I beg you, let me give you the last rites.
William Williamson: You're stubborn, Damien. No. I'm the one that got away. Don't worry, I'll say a good word for you on the other side.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits play over a scene of men on horseback with dogs searching a native village for lepers who have been hidden away by their families. See more »


Version of Father Damien: The Leper Priest (1980) See more »


O Christmas Tree
(or "O Tannenbaum")
Traditional tune, lyrics by Ernst Anschütz
[Incorrectly credited as written by Ernst Anschütz]
Sung during the Christmas service
See more »

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User Reviews

Could have been better
11 October 2009 | by SandcoolerSee all my reviews

This was an almost unrealistically ambitious co-production between Belgium and a whole bunch of other countries, but the many different sources of interference don't hurt the finished product as much as I thought it would. More funding brings more supplies, and that shows. Paul Cox may not be a particularly skilled director, but his country does appear to have a lot of money so it evens out. The visual style to this movie looks really professional, sometimes it'll give you a made for TV-vibe, but that will just be a sporadic feel. The screenplay has some pacing problems, but that doesn't mean it's slow. It just keeps randomly changing in pace, which isn't nearly as exciting as you'd think. There are bunches of scenes where there's nothing happening, but when father Damien ends up contracting leprosy, the movie suddenly looks like it's sick of itself and just takes every possible shortcut to the ending. I do like that very last line though, as corny as it may be, and it is very corny. The biggest plus this movie has is the performance by David Wenham. Hiring an Australian guy to play Damien sounds like the worst idea ever, but he's really authentic. He's pretty much why I kept watching. This movie is fairly well-made, but there's room for improvement.

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