7.4/10
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200 user 295 critic

Calvary (2014)

Trailer
2:20 | Trailer

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After he is threatened during a confession, a good-natured priest must battle the dark forces closing in around him.
9 wins & 28 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brendan Gleeson ... Father James
Chris O'Dowd ... Jack Brennan
Kelly Reilly ... Fiona Lavelle
Aidan Gillen ... Dr. Frank Harte
Dylan Moran ... Michael Fitzgerald
Isaach De Bankolé ... Simon
M. Emmet Walsh ... The Writer
Marie-Josée Croze ... Teresa
Domhnall Gleeson ... Freddie Joyce
David Wilmot ... Father Leary
Pat Shortt Pat Shortt ... Brendan Lynch
Gary Lydon Gary Lydon ... Inspector Stanton
Killian Scott ... Milo Herlihy
Orla O'Rourke ... Veronica Brennan
Owen Sharpe ... Leo
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Storyline

Father James is a small-town priest in Ireland whose Sunday confessionals suddenly include a threat to kill him in a week's time as a matter of principle. Deeply troubled and conflicted about how to respond, Father James tries to go on with his calling through that week. However, that proves impossible as he is confronted with a troubling variety of spiritual challenges from both his estranged daughter and his own parishioners. In those dispiriting struggles, Father James' life begins to fall apart as time runs out towards a confrontation that seems to crystallize his values and what he wants his life to be. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Killing a priest on a Sunday. That'll be a good one.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual references, language, brief strong violence and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Ireland | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 April 2014 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

Calvario See more »

Filming Locations:

Rush, County Dublin, Ireland See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$956,273 (United Kingdom), 11 April 2014, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$74,149, 3 August 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,593,460, 10 October 2014
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In one scene the priest is seen asleep leaning at a rock while his daughter is reading a book. He wakes up and asks for how long he slept. His daughter replies "For ages... aeons." If you look closely you can see that she is reading a book by American horror writer H.P. Lovecraft, who uses the word "aeons" in his writing so often, that it became one of his trademarks. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Frank Harte: "Great cocaine." Hollywood glorifying illegal drug use... an industry that harms more children than sex offenders.
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Crazy Credits

The closing credits are inter-cut with empty shots of every main location that Father James Lavelle and his daughter Fiona had a significant conversation in. See more »

Connections

References Angels with Dirty Faces (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Snake Song
Written and Performed by Townes van Zandt
Published by EMI United Partnership Ltd.
Licensed Courtesy of The Domino Recording Company Ltd.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Surprisingly Far-Reaching
13 April 2014 | by pj-busSee all my reviews

At the end of the film I reflected that this was a far bigger film that I had been expecting. The issues explored in the film really do come together at the end. The credits roll silently and I noticed that the full cinema was very quiet and remained so for a much longer time than usual.

The problems in the Catholic church have had repercussions and this parish in Sligo is losing its faith. This loss of faith is portrayed very vividly, it is expressed more strongly than in reality I think.

The film revolves around the character of Father James Lavelle played powerfully by Brendan Gleeson. As Father James visits his parishioners there is much humour, often quite dark. The script has many choice lines. A man arrives to give a lift to a female parishioner who has been sexually promiscuous and she says "here is my ride".

Father James Lavelle is a likable priest, grappling with applying the church's teachings in the modern world. It is a thankless task and always his objective is undermined by the failures of the church itself. Father James's character is contrasted with that of a younger priest he shares the parish with (David Wilmot). The younger priest is very much part of the institution of the church and his loyal naïvety is humorous and infuriating.

Father James' life is threatened at the beginning, but this film is not a detective story, it is not Father Brown. Father James knows who threatened him but we the audience are not let in on the secret. The logic behind the threat is described ingeniously as events in the film come to a head at the end.


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