Novitiate

2017

Drama

19
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 87%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 71%
IMDb Rating 6.6 10 2247

Synopsis


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February 28, 2018 at 05:01 AM

Director

Cast

Dianna Agron as Sister Mary Grace
Denis O'Hare as Archbishop McCarthy
Liana Liberato as Sister Emily
Margaret Qualley as Sister Cathleen
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.11 GB
1280*534
English
NR
23.976 fps
2hr 3 min
P/S 4 / 25
2.06 GB
1920*800
English
NR
23.976 fps
2hr 3 min
P/S 4 / 20

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Red-125 9 / 10

They only wanted to love Jesus

Novitiate (2017) was written and directed by Margaret Betts. Margaret Qualley portrays Sister Cathleen, who decides to become a nun because of her love for Jesus. She was not raised as a Catholic. In fact, her mother (Julianne Nicholson) considers the decision as a horribly bad move.

As the movie progresses, I started to believe that her mother was right. Young women who want to love and serve Jesus are systematically brutalized and humiliated by the Reverend Mother (Melissa Leo). In fact, the Reverend Mother appears consumed by her desire not to allow the young women to think. She also makes it difficult for them to bond with each other. She demands total and absolute obedience from all the women--postulants, novitiates, and nuns.

Then, Vatican II ends, and the Catholic church wants to modernize and change. Whether this is good news or bad news for the nuns is an open question in the context of this movie.

You'll have to see the movie to learn what happens to Sister Cathleen and the other novitiates. We saw this film at Rochester's excellent Little Theatre, but it will work on the small screen. As I write this review, the movie has a anemic 6.7 IMDb rating. I think it's better than that.

Reviewed by alythgoeop 1 / 10

Another reason for people who think the Catholic Church is diabolical to keep thinking it

Well, I hardly know where to begin in describing how sad, tedious and inaccurate this film is. I have been a happy and healthy Dominican Sister for over 40 years, and I was optimistic that this would be a good film. I'm really sorry I wasted two hours on it. It does not do justice to the times, the complexity of the changes that began to emerge with Vatican II, and it is not even accurate in describing the process of becoming a nun. So I just wonder where Margaret Betts got her information. Did she interview anybody who actually stayed and found happiness in religious life? I doubt it.

There was no joy, no sense of companionship or sense of being part of something exciting. No real narrative about what the impact of Vatican II had on Catholic thought, just a few superficial conversations between the Archbishop and the Reverend Mother. It is a bleak and morose story of postulant Cathleen's struggle to survive a mean and closed minded mother superior whose ego should have driven her to confession.

Too bad, this could have been a great story, with compelling dialogue, dramatic tension, and a breakthrough moment of personal change. Instead it was a painful exaggeration of the predictable inaccurate stereotypes of Catholic Sisters, complete with Nun-Zilla. It gives people who have always hated the Catholic Church a good reason to keep hating it.

Margaret Betts was scheduled to Skype in and have a conversation with the audience at the theater we attended. I'm kind of glad she could not make it. The sisters in the audience would have had a hard time coming up with something nice to say.

Reviewed by sponsajesus 1 / 10

This film is so melodramatic and so bad that words can't really describe it.

A piece of salacious and ill-informed garbage. There are much better films about the difficult lives of nuns, especially prior to Vatican 2, than this one and handled much more sensitively as well. Very disappointing.

I wish I could have given this film 0 stars because that's what it deserves.

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