El Crimen del Padre Amaro
November 15, 2002
Vicente Leñero basis his screenplay on the 1875 novel by Portuguese author José Maria Eça de Queiróz. Even though the original work is over 125 years old, the theme still rings true today – corruption within the Roman Catholic Church.
Young Father Amaro (Gael Garcia Bernal) is a recently ordained priest who has been sent to a Mexican village to assist Father Benito (Sancho Gracia). In town, Amaro falls in love with one of the local girls named Amelia (Ana Claudia Talancon). Amaro soon discovers that Benito has been involved in a long time affair with Amelia’s mother, Sanjuanera (Angelica Aragon).
Not only do we deal with the story of improper relations by the priests, Benito also receives financial assistance from the local drug lord. Ruben, Amelia’s ex-boyfriend, who also happens to work for a local paper, brings out these huge scandals in the open. He resents Amaro’s affection toward Amelia and will do anything to bring down Amaro and the Church.
There has been quite a bit of praise for director Carlos Carrera’s work in bringing this old tale into the 21st century world. This movie was recently made Mexico’s 2002 entry for the Best Foreign Film category for the Academy Awards. Watch for this film at your local foreign film venue. (Marty Doskins/BOP)