Jeremy Irons plays a Spanish Jesuit who goes into the South American wilderness to build a mission in the hope of converting the Indians of the region. Robert DeNiro plays a slave hunter who is converted and joins Irons in his mission. When Spain sells the colony to Portugal, they are forced to defend all they have built against the Portugese aggressors.
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De Niro and Irons are amazing! This was a powerful and moving story, about the amazing lengths that men will go to, for good and evil, when they are passionate for their cause. This movie moved me very deeply. I love watching those movies that, when the credits roll, you find yourself a changed person. For a director to make you feel that in those few hours you spent steeped in the story, in the lives of the characters, that you somehow were able to experience something of what the characters went through... that is an awesome accomplishment. A definate must-watch!
The script is brilliant, the cinematographyi s breathtaking, the story is complex and poignant, the score is magnificent. But it lost "best picture" to Platoon, which I heard on "Fox News" this morning, holds the record for the most obscene words in a single motion picture. Go figure. This is simply one of the best movies of all time.
I like the story, which told Jesuits struggle to introduce Christianity to Guarani Indians. The early scene of Father Gabriel climbed above the falls & his oboe are my favorites.The really downside was the ending, although it's also the climax of the story, but it's really brutal watching those Portuguese soldiers slaughtered the Guarani Indians & the Jesuits, who certainly weren't their match.
Although The Mission can be predictable, being able to expect what will happen does not lessen the utter heart-wrenching emotion it portrays.The screenwriting develops so many important human issues in a capitavting[!] manner: 1) what is required to achieve forgiveness, what role does anguish play in that quest; 2) how should one "love thy neighbor" (i.e., the extent to which Christian evangelical paternalism has been both beneficial and damaging); 3) when should one question obedience/loyalty to authority (eccliastical or political - in this historical instance both overlapped); 4) is "technologized" an appropriate criterion for judging how "civilized" or how "savage" a culture is (and the hypocrisy of the common usage of the word "civilized"); 5) the destructive capacity of the values upon which the modern Western economic systems are based (i.e., greed, greed, and greed); 6) Perhaps most powerfully, what methods are appropriate for fighting for a noble cause? specifically, Ghandian or Jesusian non-violence ("turn the other cheek"), vs fighting to defend others ("holy war"). This last question presents a real dilemna for those like myself who are activists in human rights and social justice movements.While DeNiro is quite good (as always) in protraying the tormented soul in search of redemption, Jeremy Irons is fantastic here - Irons should have won Best Actor, I think. Unfortunately, to fully appreciate what may be the greatest cinematography ever, one must view The Mission on the big screen, not video.I found this movie so moving, so deeply disturbing and thought-provoking, that it is difficult for me to watch it again; EVERYONE should see this movie.
The Mission continues to be one of my all time favorite films. The sceanography of the Amazon jungle is breathtaking not only because of its vast beauty, but because of the context; Watching De Niro clamoring up the precarious falls is just one of the many images that elicits a holding of one's breath. The other major reason that I am profoundly impressed each time I watch this film is its poignant fictional representation of how the Vatican and the Catholic European monarchs of the colonial period prioritized profiteering and political intrigue over winning souls. It betrayed the innocents and sanctioned their massacre and slavery by turning away and shrugging it off with a tear(reminiscent of WWII).As any great movie elicits a strong emotional reaction from its audience, this one elicits a flood of grief and appropriately righteous indignation at the sickening atrocities and social injustices of the "civilized Christians" against a people who had no real defense against the subjugation of militarily more advanced colonizers. Here we see a fictitious yet historically accurate account of how, once again, the powers and principalities of the day will justify their own gain and security at the ex pence of others rather than doing what is right ethically and, ironically, that which is truly representative of Christianity. There are many other components of this story of which one can ponder and discuss, such as the quality of the acting of the children and the politics of the 16th and 17th century Jesuits, the early "Liberation Theologists", and martyrdom, social anthropology, ethnography and the affect on a primitive culture by exposure to another in the attempt to study it(or 'help' it), existentialism, mysticism, global politics and commerce, labor out-sourcing...just to name a few. Politics and religious ethics aside, The Mission is a gorgeous, visually rich film with what can be considered one of the best casts imaginable performing their utmost best...what more could anyone expect of a film...if it were re-released it would be among the few movies worth paying to see in theaters. Also, if it were released as a DVD it would be one of the handful of movies worth owning.
This movie is a heart wrenching dramatic fight over the fate of indigenous South American people during the time of the Jesuit order. Be warned you will cry at the end of this movie, as I did. The movie is chiefly about two priests. The first, Father Gabriel (Jeremy Irons) is a loving lovable Jesuit devoted only to the welfare of the native americans. The second, Mendoza (De Niro) is a retired military man who leaves his life of slave trading for penitance after killing his adultering brother. Mendoza lives with the natives and other jesuits mostly to forget about his sorrowful past. In the end the Jesuits characters are tested when the Portuguese decide to invade the native village for political motives, and we learn something about Gabriel and Mendoza. This is a depressing movie dealing with God, devotion, the church and the ultimately overpowering evil of men, that will make you angry. Watch carefully though, because there is a slight glimmer of hope amidst all the dispair, if only in the beautiful but somewhat sorrowful Oboe tune played by Father Gabriel when he first meets the Gauranee. Definately worth watching.
This review is from: The Mission [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray) "The Mission" is, like 1984's "The Bounty", one of a select few eighties films that is far from forgotten, but still remains somewhat underrated by modern film fans nonetheless. I was attracted to both on DVD years ago because of their incredible cast list, and was amazed to find both are among the finest films released that decade. "The Mission" stars Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons, and Liam Neeson in a deeply compelling and visually stunning tale of a Jesuit missionary trying to indoctrinate natives in South America during the mid-1700s. A detailed synopsis can be found elsewhere, so for the purposes of brevity I'm going to focus on the transfer and special features. Only mere moments into the film I was already impressed with the gorgeous transfer. I've watched the DVD recently and this is a significant upgrade in terms of image quality. Fine detail is overall excellent and the colors are much more vibrant. Quite simply, it both looks and sounds absolutely wonderful. With certain catalog titles I've found that the Blu doesn't offer the "best possible quality", but rather the "best available quality", for various reasons. In the case of "The Mission", I feel we are truly presented with the best possible quality. I didn't notice any blatant instances of artificial enhancement or otherwise distracting errors during the film. I'd give the transfer an easy 4.5 out of 5.The back of the case indicates that all of the features from the DVD have been ported over to the Blu, which includes: a commentary track by director Roland Joffe, the hour-long vintage documentary "Omnibus", and the theatrical trailer. Joffe's commentary is par for the course, he makes some curious observations and tells some interesting anecdotes. The "Omnibus" documentary is fascinating and nice to see here, but it is unfortunately presented in standard definition and it's looking seriously rough. As in, old VHS tape rough. Still, it's well worth watching, because it functions not just as a making-of piece but provides insight into how the film crew interacted with the Waunana Indians. Unfortunately, I simply could not locate the theatrical trailer on the disc. It would've been nice to have seen a contemporary piece on the film, much like the one the "Last of the Mohicans" Blu-Ray received, but this is something of a niche title and so the exclusion of such is understandable. In summation, the image quality of the documentary is lamentable, and they either forgot to include or maliciously hid the theatrical trailer, but the film itself looks crystal clear beautiful. In the end, that's why you're interested in this disc to begin with. "The Mission" comes highly recommended.Audio - DTS-HD Master Audio: English 5.1 & Dolby Digital: French 2.0Subtitles - English SDH, French, Spanish
I have a son who is a very devout Christian, bless him. He saw this with me when he was still at an age where he was sure that every religions issue could be reduced to black and white decisions. At the end of this movie I asked him what he would have done. Would he have been Jeremy Irons or Robert De Niro? I think the power of the movie can be found in his answer, " I honestly don't know which path I would have chosen." Rather than tell you what the paths were, I strongly recommend you see the movie and then ask yourself the question. Along the way, you can listen to Ennio Morricone's haunting soundtrack, especially the song "Gabriel's Oboe". Later you can buy the music, too.
One of the lesser-known Deniro films is also a gem. But I think Jeremy Irons stole the show as a sympathetic Jesuit. Liam Neeson was so young in it, it must have been one of his first roles. Beautiful sceneries and blu-ray really made the experience all that better. I'm glad I added this to my collection.
After seeing the movie "A Man For All Seasons" I thought there was no movie I would ever see that was as good. But after viewing "The Mission", I stand corrected. "The Mission" was a superb movie portraying love, compassion, and hope. Viewing this movie gives people a better understanding of forgiveness and acceptance. It shows how a person can completely turn their life around, to a life of God. I think that all people should be able to witness this movie and be able to experience the enormous amounts of love and forgiveness.
Although the story surrounds the Spanish Jesuits building a mission in the South American wilderness, the real action takes place in the heart. Robert DeNiro gives his best performance ever as an utterly depraved, tormenting slave trader that becomes truly repentant. This is a beautiful story of grace, as DeNiro tries to pay the ransom of his guilt, and begins to discover mercy, and God's unconditional love.At the same time, questions are raised surrounding the motives behind missionary work. They should be inspired by the love of God, but other aspirations have been the impetus for many throughout history. Just as in the Crusades, there were some very good intentioned Christians, but there were also many that killed and conquered in the name of a loving God.This exemplary historical film will provoke thoughts and leave viewers enriched!
The Mission is a powerful movie with a powerful message about sin, redemption, and love. It probes deep into the evils of the Catholic Church in Spain and Portugal in teh mid 18th century. Robert De Niro brilliantly portrays Rodrigo Mendoza, a dynamic character who transforms his life to a murderer who trades slaves to a Jesuit priest who fights for those seemingly 'enslaved' natives - the Guaranese. Jeremy Irons ixquisitley plays the role of a truly Christ-like figure. Father Gabriel is the epitomy of compassion, lvove, and understanding. With an incredibly written screenplay by Robert Bolt (who also wrote A Man For All Seasons), the Mission is an incredible film which explores the depths and beauty of morality and life ont he path to Jesus Christ.
This is a highly enjoyable epic film. DeNiro is his usual captivating self only this time instead of being an Italian gangster or wise guy in the 20th century, his character lives in 18th century South America.I enjoyed this film because I am a DeNiro fan and I enjoy his style of acting. It was pleasing to see him attempt a different type of role.If you're a DeNiro fan, check this one out
What can be said other than this movie is a certain 5 star. A lesson from the history. Great plot and acting.
This movie is accurate for showing the culture of the Jesuits, for example; their lack of material possessions. The Jesuits taught a great example of repentance in the way which Mendoza took upon himself the task of carrying a bag of armor up the mountain to be forgiven and receive the privilege of being a Jesuit. Altamirano`s way of teaching was through love. He showed that the culture and ways of the Guarani was not important to receive the message which he carried. He wasn't willing to fight against the government because they were his brothers. He had such a love for his church that he was not going to break the laws of the Jesuits and fight. He was killed as a priest, showing his faithfulness to God. This movie portrays the misuse of government power. Governments are to serve the people. The people of the Church have to follow the counsel of the Government. In some cases it`s appropriate for church to resist the government. A great conflict in many countries, as shown in this movie, was the governments lies, and misuse of power to obtain what they wanted; control over the church.The movie developed very slowly. It took a while to build up the characters and theme to show the plot. The themes shown in this movie were: love of man, wars between church and government, and religious protection. The actors of this film did a great job of portraying the emotions of the Jesuits, Guarani, and government officials. When the Guarani child sings you can see: the fear in the Guarani's faces, anger of governmental officials, and peacemaking of the Jesuits. A striking scene is when the Guarani mothers were forced to abandon their children.
It was like the protectors who keep what they should. I think this isvery impressed because it is based on the real history. This moviedeals about the time when the conflicts between Spain and Portugal'scolony in Latin America. To conclude this problem, in the church, theysent a bishop. In the new continent, there was many churches, one wasthe church managed by Father Gabriel. The bishop knew they will bedestroyed, everything. Finally, the victims of cruel actuality becameashes. The survivors in the ruins, they came to live with mistrust.Because of old movie, its graphic is not good at all. But the famousand beautiful landscapes, and excellent filming express thismasterpiece. And in this movie, there is one thing which made the moviebetter. It is the soundtrack. The music, which is called as the mostperfect sound in the all of soundtracks, is just one but it expresseseverything in the movie's situations; Faith, hope, love, courage,sacrifice, sadness, and even aftertaste. If you see this movie, youwill be impressive if you're Christian or not.
Missionaries, slave traders, and colonizers mingle in this dishonest,naive and simplistic tale, in which a band of monks defend NativeIndians from marauding Europeans in 18th Century South America. The film oozes the kind of bourgeois anger of Oliver Stone, beating usover the head with "messages" and placating us with nicecinematography, romantic primitivism and cosy Christianity. The film was produced by David Puttnam, a guy who specializes in makingfilms which pretend to say the right thing (indictments of injustices),but actually say the reverse. Take "Chariots of Fire", a film aboutsocial biases and anti-Semitism which everyone remembers instead forhunky, blonde haired runners running majestically in slow motion.Puttnam's films consistently seem to say the right things, whilstactually reinforcing something else, and so it's no surprise that "TheMission" bashes Colonialism, but not if it's done right and not if weforget that European religious enterprise was just as guilty asPortugal, France, Spain and England's economic apparatus in spreadingdisease, havoc, death, famine and political self renunciation.Some complain that the film shows little interest in the Indians andfocuses instead on three Christian martyrs, but such is the norm.What's really annoying is the way the villains of this picture sanctionthe overthrowing of missions and tribes whilst constantly professing,through various monologues and conversations, that they knew better.That they knew what they were doing was wrong and would haveramifications.All bad historical message movies do this, neglecting to "show" thecauses of history/behaviour "at the time" in favour for characters whoimpossibly possess a very modern vantage point which allows for falsereflections and reconciliation. It's the Ridley Scott, StephenSpielberg, Edward Zwick style of history.Still, if one is willing to bathe in pretty signs and sounds, bedistracted by money (ie expensive location photography) and switch offone's brain, there are several good things on display. Jeremy Irons andLiam Neeson play a pair of affecting Jesuit priests, Robert De Niro attimes looks handsome (this is where he stopped acting), EnnioMorricone's score is divine and the film possesses 3 sublime scenes.These three scenes are worth suffering through the film.6.5/10 Â Worth one viewing. See Pontecorvo's "Burn!" instead.
This review is from: The Mission [VHS] (VHS Tape) I couldn't disagree more with Tom Keogh's review of this movie. It is one of the most stirring and emotional epics I've seen in a long time. The performances are outstanding, the scenery is breathtaking and the music wonderful. I am ordering this movie right now for my library. It reminds me of the underrated "To Play in the Fields of the Lord", however were "To Play" treated the subject matter in a more cynical fashion, questioning the often zealous nature of the missionaries, "the Mission" truly inspires the belief in God and in the true nature of these missionaries. I recommend this movie to anyone, it is a great epic and deserved every nomination it received.
Me and the Pope agree on this one: "The Mission" is my favorite film ofall time. It's been nineteen years since this film was first releasedand it still continues to set the standard for serious historicaldramas. It not only touched upon one of the most important issues ofthe 1980s (the debate over liberation theology that was currentlytaking place in Latin America), but also provided important historicalcontext and raised haunting questions about war, pacifism and the powerof forgiveness for the human soul. It's still hard to watch this filmwithout tears. Irons is great and DeNiro gives perhaps the greatestperformance of his stellar career. It's hard to believe that such amilestone in film-making has continued to be somewhat overlooked indiscussions of the greatest films of all time. Yet, among true filmfans "The Mission," will continue to inspire and generate discussionslong after so many other critical darlings have gathered dust on theshelf.
This movie has many excellent features. It contains wonderful camera workin breathtaking scenery, an impressive score, and generally goodperformances. All these things make the film quite powerful, and it canreally draw the viewer in. But there are a number of historicalinaccuracies. This is quite important, because the film begins with thewords "This is a true story that actually took place in 1750." Themovie'sportrayal of the Indians, and their relationship to the missionaries, hasbeen attacked by historians, among other aspects.