Sins Of The Flesh
Chris Luallen | Nashville, Tennessee | 03/09/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Father Amaro (Gael Garcia Bernal) is a young priest sent to work in the small, rural town of Los Reyes, Mexico. Father Amaro is idealistic at first. But soon discovers that his senior priest, Father Benito, has an ongoing affair with a local woman named Sanjuanera and that he is also laundering drug money for some murderous narco-traffickers in order to raise funds to build a "First World quality" hospital.
Soon Father Amaro finds himself involved in his own forbidden love affair with a romantically obsessed young girl named Amelia (Ana Claudia Talacon). When Amelia becomes pregnant the selfish Father Amaro seeks to protect his own career by pressuring Amelia into having an abortion. But the illegal abortion is botched and Amelia ends up bleeding to death. Yet, despite all his horrific misdeeds, Father Amaro is wrongly credited as being a hero for trying to save Amelia while the blame for her pregnancy and abortion is falsely placed on her "heretic" ex-boyfriend.
This movie depicts a tragedy of Shakespearean proportions, with the worst characters, most notably Father Amaro himself, making out fine. While those with good intentions tend to suffer. For instance, the idealistic Father Natalio is ex-communicated by the Church for his devotion to a village of poor peasants. So, yes, this movie does offer a critique on the corruption within the Catholic Church. But, more importantly, it is about the corruption of the soul, which each of us, as human beings, are susceptible to.
"The Crimes Of Father Amaro" was one of the first in what has turned out to be a long line of intelligent, artistic Mexican films made over the last 5 years. I also highly recommend "Amores Perros" and "Y Tu Mama Tambien". This is a great movie. Go watch it!"