Monday, May 4, 2009

Sinner (2007)

Sinner is an independent film directed by Marc Benardout about Fr. Anthony Romano, who amid personal conflict and struggles with discouragement, rediscovers his vocation through an encounter with a troubled soul. The salvific mission of the Church in manifested through the priest's efforts, a mission which endures in spite of the crisis and scandal without and within.

Sinner is happily not another cheap unmasking of clerical misbehavior, yet neither does it cringe from showing the ugly side of a life devoted to depravity. Lil the prostitute is about as lost as anyone can be; as she reveals herself it is like a glimpse into the pit of hell. In her desperation to seduce the priest in order to destroy him, her language goes from raunchy to obscene. Fr. Anthony is able to see beyond the lewdness to the injured child deep inside, almost like a doctor surveying a victim with third degree burns.

As director Marc Benardout says of Fr. Anthony in the Q&A scetion of the Sinner website:
Depressed and handicapped by questions of faith and doubts about his own physical capacities, it would be really easy for him to turn his back on the whole life he has led to this point and not complicate his life further. Instead, he buckles down, digs deep and by helping Lil, he restores his faith in his earlier choice to become a priest. His experience and training ultimately are not wasted. Indeed, the life he has lived, whatever its regrets and lost opportunities, provides him the wisdom to see that Lil needs help, not judgment. Whatever she is, and we see she is a lot of trouble, she still is a human being and worth taking a risk on. Father Anthony sees this and is refined by his vision.
Along with Nick Chinlund as Fr. Anthony Romano and Georgina Cates as Lil, the cast includes Michael E. Rodgers and Brad Dourif. Rodgers plays Fr. Stephen, the outspoken, overzealous young priest who wants Fr. Anthony out of the way. Brad Dourif of Grima Wormtongue fame portrays the mysterious caddie, Fr. Anthony's sole confidant. Since the language and situations are on the lurid side, Sinner is not a drama I would recommend for young people. For anyone who enjoys well-crafted cinema and powerful acting featured in a story of redemption, then this is a film to see. Share


Terry Nelson said...

I have never heard of the film - I will have to get it. Thaanks.

elena maria vidal said...

I would love to have your opinion of it, Terry.

Enbrethiliel said...


That's a provocative poster, but it's the description of the plot that makes me want to see it, too.

elena maria vidal said...

Yes, you are right. I changed it to the other promotional poster.