‘The Rite’ - peddling Christianity (IANS Movie Review)February 11th, 2011 - 7:26 pm ICT by IANS
By Satyen K. Bordoloi
Film: “The Rite”; Cast: Anthony Hopkins, Colin O’Donoghue, Alice Braga, Ciarán Hinds; Director: Mikael Hafstrom; Rating: * 1/2 As a religion, despite its psalms about love, Christianity is based on fear. Fear not of the bad, but of evil and the’ evil or devil’. And it is this devil that “The Rite” sells its soul to, managing nothing more than a little grab of the audience’s attention and not much empathy.
Michael (Colin O’Donoghue) is a logical atheist who joins to train as a priest only to get away from his father. When he desires to quit, citing lack of faith, he is sent to Rome for a two month long course in exorcism. Here his skepticism is in full swing but an encounter with Father Lucas (Anthony Hopkins) in search of proof, will change his faith forever.
The best thing about the film is Hopkins. He gives a “Silence of The Lambs” performance, which he indeed has repeated in a number of films before. Yet, it is not enough to raise the bar of a film with dangerous and distorted politics.
The main problem with the film is that it claims it is based on a true story, thus being unmindful of humanity and history that is replete with examples of million burnt at the stake, murdered or persecuted in the name of Christ The Saviour’. The love of Christ would never have led to these religious killings. What did lead men to do it was the devil, an imaginary minion of charlatans who exert control over humanity using its fear, guised in the love of the lord.
“The Rite” ends up inside the long roster of those instruments used to make people fearful of a nonexistent devil. In doing so, it seems like a corporate film for the Vatican church, out to get people back to church, again not out of love of Jesus, but fear of the devil.
Unlike its character Michael, played extremely unconvincingly by Colin O’Donoghue, the film does not show any lack of faith against the superstitions rife in Christianity. Instead, it carefully throws a compassionate eye at the cruel, unscientific act of exorcism, thus justifying it. If not its endless stream of cliches and bad acting, then just for this reason alone, it deserves to be burnt at the cinematic stake.
- Warner Bros Releases New Trailer For Anthony Hopkins Starrer The Rite - Dec 10, 2010
- I'm not an atheist: Anthony Hopkins - Feb 08, 2011
- Danny O’Donoghue Not Tempted By Cameron Diaz - Dec 05, 2010
- Oz sending back 'medically unfit' Bangladeshi girl will be like 'issuing death sentence': Lawyer - Jan 30, 2011
- Joss Stone turns down an offer from 'The Voice' - Jul 30, 2012
- Catholic Church to train priests on how to perform exorcisms - Nov 14, 2010
- Cameron Diaz blown off by singer - Dec 04, 2010
- Bono's daughter in The Strips video - Sep 03, 2010
- Surge in Satanism sparks rise in demand for exorcists: Catholic Church - Mar 31, 2011
- Oz study links snoring to brain damage - Oct 22, 2010
- Nevada observes 25th Thanksgiving with Christian-Muslim-Hindu-Buddhist-Jewish-Baha'i prayers - Nov 26, 2010
- Ashley Bell Talks About Her Role In "The Last Exorcism" - Aug 26, 2010
- Christian women in US town invited to pole dance for Jesus - Mar 23, 2011
- 'Ghost Rider - Spirit of Vengeance' a thrilling ride for youngsters (IANS Movie Review) - Feb 17, 2012
- With choruka, kanji, Kerala observes Good Friday - Apr 06, 2012
Tags: alice braga, anthony hopkins, atheist, cast anthony hopkins, charlatans, corporate film, exorcism, father lucas, full swing, killings, minion, movie review, o donoghue, psalms, replete with examples, saviour, silence of the lambs, skepticism, superstitions, vatican church