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Keeping the Faith (2000)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 14 April 2000 (USA)
Two friends, a priest and a rabbi, fall in love with the same woman they knew in their youth, but the religious position of both men denies them romance.


Edward Norton


Stuart Blumberg
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ben Stiller ... Rabbi Jake Schram
Edward Norton ... Father Brian Finn
Jenna Elfman ... Anna Riley
Anne Bancroft ... Ruth Schram
Eli Wallach ... Rabbi Ben Lewis
Ron Rifkin ... Larry Friedman
Milos Forman ... Father Havel
Holland Taylor ... Bonnie Rose
Lisa Edelstein ... Ali Decker
Rena Sofer ... Rachel Rose
Ken Leung ... Don
Brian George ... Paulie Chopra
Catherine Lloyd Burns ... Debbie
Susie Essman ... Ellen Friedman
Stuart Blumberg ... Len


Jake and Brian are friends. They are Jewish and Catholic respectively. They would grow up and become a rabbi and priest. Anna, whom they knew when they were younger, comes back to town a stunning woman. Jake is up to be the head of his synagogue but he is not married which doesn't make his appointment any easier. Jake finds himself attracted to Anna but because she's not Jewish, he can't marry her as it would make his appointment less likely. Brian also finds himself attracted to Anna, but the priesthood doesn't allow that. Their friendship is strained when each learns of the other's feelings for her. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


If you have to believe in something, you might as well believe in love.


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Hebrew | Spanish

Release Date:

14 April 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Divinas tentaciones See more »


Box Office


$29,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,078,671, 16 April 2000

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Composer Elmer Bernstein was hired due to an enthusiastic recommendation by the film's Editor Malcolm Campbell to Edward Norton, with whom Campbell had worked with when he was the primary editor for John Landis' films and Bernstein had scored for a period of ten or more years. Those films include An American Werewolf In London, Trading Places, Michael Jackson's Thriller, Spies Like Us, and Three Amigos! Campbell was an assistant editor when Bernstein first collaborated with Landis on National Lampoon's Animal House and also on Blues Brothers, where Bernstein provided the very brief "God Music" for the film. Bernstein was not involved with Twilight Zone The Movie which Campbell edited Landis' segment since the entire film was scored by the late Jerry Goldsmith. See more »


The rabbi works with a young man on his Torah portion but refers to it as a haftarah. Also, the bar mitzvah boy is studying the first chapter of Genesis and has his bar mitzvah before the Jewish New Year. This portion is read after the Jewish New Year, not before. See more »


Father Havel: I have been a priest over 40 years, and I fell in love at least once every decade.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thank-yous include one to "Salmita Bonita", a reference to actor-director 'Edward Norton''s girlfriend, actress Salma Hayek. See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD release features quite a few edited scenes, including:
  • Brian takes Anna to the club while it's still under construction
  • Brian tries to come into the bar with a bottle of liquor in his hand. The bartender tells him 'No Bottles', so he promptly drinks the remainder
  • Brian and Jakob walk through an art museum with Anna (featuring the scene from the Gag Reel where Anna can't say the name of the picture she's standing in front of); eventually, her cel phone rings, she has a yelling match with a co-worker, and falls in the fountain (also seen in the Gag Reel)
  • A bit with young Jakob and Brian making a kung-fu movie with a home video camera
  • Anna talking to Ruth about Jakob and Jake's brother (establishing exactly why Ruth never forgave him)
  • A piece from Jakob's date, where the woman talks about running and breast implants before having a sneezing fit and smashing her face on the table
  • Jakob tells Anna to put her pager under her skirt while she's at work, and he'll call her; two co-workers come in just as Jake starts calling, trying to get her to help them work out the numbers as she 'gets buzzed'
See more »


Referenced in At the Still Point (2005) See more »


Heart of Mine
Written and Performed by Peter Salett
See more »

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User Reviews

fun movie
1 May 2002 | by chuckrulesSee all my reviews

They say Faith can move mountains. They say Faith can get you through the turmoil of life. What happens though when your Faith in God runs headlong into your Love of a woman? Can the two exist if the woman is of a different Faith? Can it exist if you are the leader of your denomination? Ed Norton's directorial debut examines this in what could be a serious movie but is a very funny romantic movie. We start with Father Brian Finn, Ed Norton, stumbling drunk and landing in an all night bar. He ends up telling the story to a world-weary bartender who claims to have heard it all. The bartender knew he had heard it all when it started with, `There's this Priest and a Rabbi…' Actually the story doesn't start there though. Approximately 16 years early Brian Finn and Jacob Schram, two best friends, met their soul mate Anna Riley. She was the kind of girl all boys wanted to be around, cute but not too girlish. These three are never seen without each other. Disaster strikes 2 years later when Anna's father is moved across the country to New York. The three occasionally keep in touch through letters but think that their partnership is over. We jump to the future where the two boys have taken interesting jobs. It seems Brian and Jake, Ben Stiller, have always had a calling and that calling was to preach the word. Brian has become a Priest and Jake is now a Rabbi. Both are the hottest things to hit their respective Church's and are shaking things up with contemporary ideas. They are even jokingly known in the streets as `The God Squad.' They reach some opposition from the old-line members of their respective congregations however the increased numbers at each service is hard to argue with. One fine day Brian informs Jake that their old friend, Anna is going to be coming to New York for work and wants to get together with them. Both are stunned to find their gangly tomboyish friend has grown up to be a stunning workaholic played by Jenna Elfman. Here's where the story really gets interesting. The three friends begin palling around again and getting to know everything about them. Anna is basically the proto-typical 2000 woman. She is so busy working that she rarely has time to go out with men in fact as she puts it, she has a relationship with her phone. Anna is more interested in getting to know about the two guys. She finds it fascinating that the two men are so dedicated to their churches and attends services at both. She also is interested in knowing how they are going to get their Catholic/Jewish Community Center opened. However what interests her the most is the men's relationship issues. She quizzes Brian about his faith and of course about his vow…the big vow…and wants to know what is going on with Jake and his women. I say women because all the women at the Synagogue are desperate to get their daughters married off to the young Rabbi. This leads to a couple of wonderful dates for Jake. Problems occur with all this time spent together though. Brian begins to question his vows of Celibacy more and more as he is around Anna. Even more of a problem though occurs between Anna and Jake as they fall in love. This wouldn't be too much of a problem if Jake was just your normal attendee of the Synagogue however being a Rabbi up for his own church? Well let's just say it isn't looked upon too well to be going out with a blonde Irish girl if you want to lead a Synagogue. Since this is a Romantic/Comedy we know how it is going to end. The pleasure of the movie is watching how they get there. All three actors deliver superb performances. We knew Ed Norton was a great actor but Ben Stiller and Jenna Elfman more than stand with him in terms of comedic timing and drama. I was doubly impressed that Jenna, unlike some other television actresses, was able to successfully shed her television persona for a new gig. The dialogue was rapid fire and funny. The timing of the movie was also well paced. We had seen early evidence of Ed Norton's abilities when he helped out trimming down American History X and he continues to do a great job with the reins fully in his hands. This was definitely worth full price at the theater and is a great Date Movie.

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