Friday, 24 December 2010

"Of Gods and Men" - worth seeing

Yesterday I went to see "Of God's and Men" which was screened at the Greenwich Picturehouse. The film tells of a Trappist monastery in Algeria in the time before seven of the community were beheaded in 1996 by Muslim extremists.

The performance of Michael Lonsdale as "Father Luc" was outstanding. He was the doctor who looked after local people with patience and kindness, and attended to the bullet wound of one of the terrorists, remarking to the Prior that he had also treated Nazis in his time.

The heroism of the monks is shown against the backdrop of uncertainty in the community. The decision to remain despite the growing menace is only reached gradually but once they are agreed, there is a wonderful scene in which Father Luc brings a couple of bottles of wine to supper the night before they are all taken. He puts on a tape of the dying swan from Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake and the characters of the individual monks are shown in their faces.

The 15 certificate is probably given because of a scene that is (unnecessarily) graphic early on when the terrorists cut some people's throats. Apart from that, there is nothing unpleasant, and I would recommend this film to you as a sympathetic portrayal of genuine nobility, courage, and Christian charity.
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