6.7/10
7,808
20 user 44 critic

Pope Joan (2009)

Die Päpstin (original title)
A woman of English extraction born in the German city of Ingelheim in the ninth century disguises herself as a man and rises through the Vatican ranks.

Director:

Sönke Wortmann

Writers:

Donna Woolfolk Cross (novel), Heinrich Hadding (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

4 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Johanna Wokalek ... Johanna von Ingelheim
David Wenham ... Gerold
John Goodman ... Pope Sergius
Iain Glen ... Village Priest
Edward Petherbridge ... Aesculapius
Anatole Taubman ... Anastasius
Lotte Flack Lotte Flack ... Johanna von Ingelheim - Age 10-14
Tiger Lily Hutchence Geldof Tiger Lily Hutchence Geldof ... Pope Joan - age 6-9 (as Tigerlily Hutchinson)
Jördis Triebel ... Joan's mother
Oliver Cotton ... Arsenius
Nicholas Woodeson ... Arighis
Suzanne Bertish ... Bishop Arnaldo
Richard van Weyden ... Eusthasius
Branko Tomovic ... Paschal
Lenn Kudrjawizki ... Jordanes
Edit

Storyline

German village Igelheim's backward priest hopes his sons to succeed him after education in the bishop's cathedral school, but the elder succumbs to disease and the youngest lacks any intellectual drive. Traveling teacher Aesculapius arranges for the inquisitive daughter Johanna to be enrolled too, against their father's wishes. Unfit for the boys-only dorm, she gets to stay with count Gerold, incurring his wife's due jealousy. She's to be dismissed, but survives a Viking pillaging slaughter and assumes brother Johannes's identity to join a monastery, where she becomes the infirmary's trainee. Fleeing exposure as female, she arrives in Rome. As a protégée of rivals in the viper nest-like papal court, she ends up elected as pope, but carries count Gerold's baby, guaranteeing exposure. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

Germany | UK | Italy | Spain

Language:

English | Latin

Release Date:

22 October 2009 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Pope Joan See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

€22,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$27,412,220, 8 June 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is based on the popular story of the 'female Pope' that has become widespread since the Middle Ages and thereafter. Pope Joan has been mentioned in works that were released several centuries after her supposed reign. Most modern scholars have dismissed the stories as fictional, due to lack of contemporary documentation, and the debunking of indirect evidence. Many theories abound that the lack of evidence is the result of successful attempts by the Catholic Church to erase Joan's existence from history. The matter therefore remains controversial. See more »

Quotes

Johanna von Ingelheim: As for strength of will, women can be viewed as superior to man. Eve ate from the apple out of love of knowledge and learning. Adam ate it only because Eve asked him to.
See more »

Connections

Version of Pope Joan (1972) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A flawed masterpiece
11 April 2013 | by diz-syd-63See all my reviews

I realise many criticise this movie for being 'based on fiction' but hey. It's a move and very good entertainment at that. I loved all the actors EXCEPT John Goodman who was cringeworthy as Pope Sergius. In particular, Johanna Wokalek is a revelation, I love her simplicity and pure spirt, at least that's how her "Joan" came across to me. The mediæval setting is well done, though lacks the glorious costumes of high budget productions. There is criticism that the crowd scenes are a little uncrowded, I didn't notice this at all. David Wenham's a gorgeous actor with an amazing voice I love his rendition of the almost gormless Gerold, so ruggedly handsome. I also like the all to short role Iain Glen was given as the Village Priest, what wonderful acting. Much praise also to the very sweet Tigerlilly Hutchinson (Tigerlilly??), she plays the young Joan with aplomb. Not the best historical drama I've seen but an excellent one, only thing missing was the fragrance of mediæval europe.


2 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 20 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed