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John Paul II - The Millennial Pope
John Paul II - The Millennial Pope
Actors: Alexandra Rhodie, Socorro Santiago, Maurizio Benazzo, Carlos Navedo, Christopher Zach
Director: Helen Whitney
Genres: Television, Educational, Documentary, Mystery & Suspense
NR     2005     2hr 30min

He's the charismatic Holy Father who commands great influence not only over the Catholic Church but also among world leaders and politicians and issues of human rights and social justice. Pope John Paul II is as much a pro...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Alexandra Rhodie, Socorro Santiago, Maurizio Benazzo, Carlos Navedo, Christopher Zach
Director: Helen Whitney
Genres: Television, Educational, Documentary, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Television, Educational, Biography, History, Crime & Conspiracy, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Pbs Paramount
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen
DVD Release Date: 03/08/2005
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 2hr 30min
Screens: Color,Full Screen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

A dissappointing film about a great man and Pope
Derrik Mantel | Maplewood, MN USA | 08/24/2004
(1 out of 5 stars)

"I agree the with reader above that Frontline has not accurately portrayed the Pope in this video. Weigel's Witness to Hope is a superior production and representation. This one spews a lot of misinformation - specifically regarding the Catholicism, Pope Pius XII and the Jews during the holocaust as well as Maximillian Kolbe. It paints the Catholic church negatively while occassionally giving the pope credit for things as though they originated in him and not in the actual teachings of the church. They interview very liberal English-speaking Catholics who make sweeping unsubstantiated statements based on personal opinion and bias that detract from John Paul II and his accomplishments. History will remember John Paul II as John Paul II the Great, a modern doctor of the church. This video does give him credit for hastening the fall of communism. One scene shows the communist Polish head of state literally shaking at a press conference in the presence of the Pope. It's hard to eclipse so bright a star."
Threw it to a garbage
Mark | Portland, OR USA | 04/04/2005
(1 out of 5 stars)

"I bought this tape few years ago and finally I watched it yesterday and ... threw it to a garbage. About 40% of the film was devoted to the Jewish cause with a lot of misleading information. For example, the film accuses Poles (not Germans) for the holocaust. It forgets the fact that the number of Poles who died during the WWII was equal to the number of Jews, and many of them died for helping Jews. If you want to see a film about the Pope look somewhere else."
The pope through a very dark lens
C. Kelly | Minneapolis | 04/08/2005
(1 out of 5 stars)

"I was surprised and disappointed by the "Millennial Pope."

From the very start, with an MTV-stlye montage of graphic images culled from the Holocaust, violent video games and horrific war zones, it states John Paul II was "a man at war with the 20th century,'' not a particularly insightful way to sum up his papacy.

Then, before the facts of his life are presented, we hear from three people, two of whom think he's sending the chuch in completely the wrong direction - one of them, a writer who has left the church, essentially says the pope is killing the church. (Later we hear repeatedly from a former priest, a woman who's angry because she can not be ordained a priest and other critics of the church. Rebuttal or contrasting views are absent.)

The organization of the video, too, is odd for a biography. It skips over some aspects of his life with hardly a mention and then divides the film into sections such as "The Jews," "Liberation Theology," "The Women." I'm not saying that these issues don't have a place in a discussion of his papacy; the question of the inhumane treatment of Jews in Poland (and the world) during the Holocaust is an important one and one that shaped his life and his papacy. But together, those three subdivisions take up almost 75% of the video.)

In addition, I'd stronly advise against children and even younger teens being shown this as a biography. If it were a movie, it would almost certainly rate an R for the amount of graphic violence: video of a martyred, bloodied priest after his death, bodies of Holocaust victims being tossed into heaps, people hanged in trees and swollen in death.

This video presents a dark and frankly disturbing take of John Paul II's papacy and it leaves me with more questions than answers about his life.
Unforgettable; a real contribution
Marianne Bacon | Middletown, CT | 08/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I happened on these reviews while I was simply trying to remember the name of the amazing person who did this film (Helen Whitney! it came back to me). These reviews (or the stars assigned) simply fail to recognize the artistry and profundity of this film. This was a powerful, riveting, hugely respectful look at John Paul II. I have tried to give copies of this film to as many people as I think might take a look. Helen Whitney did a superb job of searching very deeply into the witness of this great man in the midst of our culture's contradiction.
The persons who contributed comment in the film are remarkable in themselves: people like David Berlinski and Lorenzo Albacete."