Monsignor (1982)


“Do you think God was planning on wasting a miracle on US? ” – Clara

Number of Times Seen – Twice (cable in the 80’s and 10 Feb 2020)

Brief Synopsis – A newly ordained priest during World War II gets involved in some shady issues concerning the Vatican and the Mob which haunt him for decades.

My Take on it – This is a film that I recall seeing as a kid on cable and can honestly say that I probably didn’t understand anything when I think about it in retrospect.

The premise of the film is an interesting one but since the characters aren’t developed well enough here, none of them come across as being sympathetic at all.

Both of the lead actors – Christopher Reeve and Catherine Bujold are great actors but they are wasted in these very superficial roles.

The plot tries much too hard to appear more mysterious and sinister than it really is and the fact that it’s so obvious takes so much away from things here.

The idea of a story connecting both the Church and the Mafia, two of the most powerful institutions in the world is quite intriguing to watch but this film isn’t able to find a way to make things more engaging and instead things move along much too slowly and it drags too often along the way which is a shame.

Bottom Line – Interesting idea but they fail to make the characters sympathetic at all. Reeve and Bujold are great actors yet neither is utilized well enough here. The story tries too hard to appear more sinister and mysterious than it really is and that also hurts things a it. The idea of trying to show the various connections between these two very powerful institutions in the world is quite intriguing but it’s too bad that they don’t find a way to make this story more engaging since it drags along too much.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – When Christopher Reeve was offered this movie, Reeve was keen to play against his ‘Superman’ super-hero screen persona, which he had also done in Deathtrap (1982) and Somewhere in Time (1980). Reeve once commented after being cast in this film: “I thought the chance to play a morally ambiguous character who was neither clearly good nor clearly bad, someone to whom life is much more complex than the characters I’ve played previously would be good.”(From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)

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One thought on “Monsignor (1982)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1982 | MovieRob

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