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alvary (2014) — IrelandCalvary (2014) — Ireland

           Father James (Brendan Gleeson) is a wise and wizened priest in a small village on the Irish coast. The rugged terrain befits his authentic faith that doesn't shrink from hard questions, compassion, and candor. In the first minutes of this film, Father James receives a death threat. The rest of the film is filled with cameo characters who test his faith and theirs in various, foreboding ways — despair, wealth, adultery, cynicism, suffering, the death of innocents, aging, and, like a recurring bass line, priestly pedophilia. He has his own past, too — a wife who died, a daughter who tried suicide, and alcoholism. He has experienced the whiplash of faith and doubt. He knows the meaning of giving and asking for forgiveness, not only for himself, but for his people and his own church. His genuine faith leads to his personal Calvary.

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