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Robert De Niro,
In early 18th century Peru an old Inca rope bridge collapses, plunging five travelers to their deaths in the Andean chasm below. Brother Juniper, who was within minutes of being on the bridge himself, becomes obsessed with discovering how five people of differing class and circumstances came to be on the bridge at that moment. The Catholic friar wants to know if it was mere existential happenstance or part of God's cosmic plan. After researching the lives of the victims for five years and publishing his findings in a book, he is accused of heresy by the worldly Archbishop of Lima and is put on trial for his life by the Inquisition.Written by
I thought the movie was brilliant. I got it right from the word go - it was outstanding in how they brought the message of whether God has a hand in everything or whether our own actions, not only on our behalf but in our reactions towards other people and free will set things in motion that then lead to tragedy (and if we change in our behaviour, could we save or is it destiny and God's Will that overrides whatever we do?)
I think it helps to be Catholic with a keen interest in Church history. I can understand that otherwise one would perhaps struggle and end up playing a bit of catch up whilst watching the movie and that could lead to losing one or two important items of information. A better explanation in the beginning in some form would've helped I think.
The actors were brilliant. Kathy Bates irritated me in just the right amount and yet one felt compassion for her. Harvey Keitel outstanding and Robert de Niro played the consummate political leading clergyman perfectly. Geraldine Chaplin hit a perfect note.
As for the actual death scene, even though I knew how was going to die, it was still an immensely poignant moment and captured just everything perfectly. Gabriel Byrne's lilted narrative was just right. No judgement, nothing of that sort, but just a note of sadness. He wasn't burnt at the stake because he queried, he was burnt because he had found out too much (that's a personal opinion).
I am out to find the book soonest.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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