Mission

The Mission

4.8 25
Director: Roland Joffé

Cast: Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons, Ray McAnally

     
 

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Featuring a majestic score by Ennio Morricone and lush Oscar-winning cinematography by Chris Menges, Roland Joffé's The Mission examines the events surrounding the Treaty of Madrid in 1750, when Spain ceded part of South America to Portugal, and turns this episode into an allegory for the mid-'80s struggles of Latin America. Two European forces are on hand to

Overview

Featuring a majestic score by Ennio Morricone and lush Oscar-winning cinematography by Chris Menges, Roland Joffé's The Mission examines the events surrounding the Treaty of Madrid in 1750, when Spain ceded part of South America to Portugal, and turns this episode into an allegory for the mid-'80s struggles of Latin America. Two European forces are on hand to win the South American natives over to imperialist ways. The plunderers want to extract riches and slaves from the New World. The missionaries, on the other hand, want to convert the Indians to Christianity and win over their souls. Mendoza (Robert De Niro) is an exploiter dabbling in the slave trade. But after he kills his brother Felipe (Aidan Quinn) in a fit of rage, he seeks redemption and calls upon the missionaries to assist him. After repeatedly climbing a cliff with a heavy weight as penance, Mendoza finds redemption and becomes a devout missionary at a settlement run by Gabriel (Jeremy Irons). The missionaries want to promote a new society in which the natives will live together in peace with the Spanish and the Portuguese. But this concept frightens the royal governors, who would rather enslave the natives than encourage peaceful coexistence between the Europeans and the Indians. They order the mission to be burned to the ground. But this event causes a rift between Gabriel, who wants to pray and pursue peaceful resistance, and Mendoza, who wants to take up arms and fight the Europeans.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mike Cummings
Although this 1986 Roland Joffé film won high praise, the acclaim was by no means universal. Not a few reviewers criticized it for depicting Christianized natives in 18th Century South America as little more than talking mannequins à la the old Tarzan movies. Many of these same reviewers also maintained that the script and scope of the film restricted the ability of Jeremy Irons (Father Gabriel) and Robert DeNiro (a reformed slave trader named Mendoza) to develop their celluloid alter egos beyond mere symbols of character types. However, almost every critic lauded the glorious cinematography of Chris Menges, who captured the naked beauty of a pristine wilderness -- and the raw brutality of a violent conflict between the noble and the ignoble. To its credit the film raises important questions for people of every age: Do educated, civilized and god-fearing people have a right, or even a duty, to enlighten the uninitiated? Or is it better to heed the words of poet Thomas Gray: "Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise"? In the battle scene near the end, perceived heroes and villains alike fall before the fury of bullets and arrows, but it is the innocent native children caught in the crossfire who command the audience's attention. Joffé does quite well in this scene -- and leaves filmgoers with something of substance to think about.

Product Details

Release Date:
12/07/2010
UPC:
0883929147144
Original Release:
1986
Rating:
PG
Source:
Warner Home Video
Sound:
[DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound]
Time:
2:05:00
Sales rank:
12,479

Special Features

Commentary by Director Roland Joffé; BBC Omnibus Documentary People on a Mission, Chronicling the Movie's South American Location Shootand Examining the Heartbreaking Lives of the Waunana Indians Who Portrayed the Film's Guanari Tribespeople; Theatrical Trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Robert De Niro Mendoza
Jeremy Irons Gabriel
Ray McAnally Altamirano
Liam Neeson Fielding
Aidan Quinn Felipe
Ronald Pickup Hontar
Monirak Sisowath Ibaye
Asuncion Ontiveros Indian chief
Cherie Lunghi Carlotta
Daniel Berrigan Sebastian
Tony Lawn Father Provincial
Rafael Camerano Spanish commander
Maria Teresa Ripoll Carlotta's Maid
Philip Bosco Actor
Carlos Duplat Portuguese Commander
Susie Figgis Actor
Alejandrino Moya Chief's Lieutenant
Juliet Taylor Actor
Charles Low Cabeza
Bercelio Moya Indian Boy
Sigifredo Ismare Witch Doctor
Rolf Gray Young Jesuit
Alvaro Guerrero Jesuit
Joe Daly Nobleman
Silvestre Chiripua Indian
Luis Carlos Gonzalez Boy Singer

Technical Credits
Roland Joffé Director
Vic Armstrong Stunts
Robert Bolt Screenwriter
Jim Clark Editor
Stuart Craig Production Designer
Norman Dorme Art Director
Fernando Ghia Producer
Peter Hutchinson Special Effects
John King Art Director
Tommie Manderson Makeup
Chris Menges Cinematographer
Ennio Morricone Score Composer
David Puttnam Producer
George Richardson Art Director
Michael Roberts Camera Operator
Enrico Sabbatini Costumes/Costume Designer
Iain Smith Associate Producer
Jack Stephens Production Designer,Set Decoration/Design

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The Mission 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I watched this movie in my modern history class, and I loved EVERYTHING about it! The score, as a whole, and individual pieces was amazing, great acting, amazing cast. This really took my breath away.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Not only was The Mission an incredibly inspirational movie, but also spiritual. It reveals the unwrapping of a man's soul and how he transforms into this spiritual being. The Mission is a must see movie and will leave you thinking hours after viewing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
A wonderfully made movie, with splendid performances by Irons and De Niro. A DVD worth having in your collection, though I wish it had more extra features. Still a great buy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
the cinematography is gorgeous. this movie is a great discussion-starter. One of the best representations of forgiveness ever dipicted on video.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I looked in the video stores for 6 months to find a VHS copy to rent so my girlfriend could see it. This movie is a powerful and emotionally wrenching spiritual experience. It asks and answers the question: Which is more important - the Message or the messenger?
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie is perfect. Stunning in every way, it is the first to make me cry for many years...
Guest More than 1 year ago
Robert DeNiro was so credible and you could almost SEE his soul when he finally was able to come to grips with himself! Despite the horrors of the politics, there is still so much love and trust in this movie. The score ''Gabriel's Oboe'' will always bring me back to this movie. I plan on purchasing it on DVD-Wide Screen so I can share it in the future with our Grandchildren. It's a perfect example of good vs evil and hopefully they will never be afraid to stand up for what is right and good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
One of the best movies ever made. Deep on several levels: Politics, Religion, Personal Redemption. Overal shows the dignity of the human soul and the struggle that one must endure.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie is a true work of art. It's a moving, emotional look into history and a mirror towards today.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A wonderful account of the unfair political decisions taken by catholic church in favor of power and convenience. One of the best movies I have ever seen.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had to watch this movie in a history class and unfortunalely didn't get the chance to see the ending. I do plan on buying the movie as I haven't been so caught up in a movie for a long time. It was the greatest thing I have seen in a long time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie movie achieves a spiritual meaning that only a few movies ever made have achieved. Through its truth and beauty, this film touches the soul as good men fight for mercy only to be crushed by the Godless. This film shows the capabilities of a government which opposses the grace of God and a society that turns away from emotion.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When the Jesuits were powerful they did some rotten things and here they could have done more for the Indians. It was a beautiful film of human power without purpose or dignity, a true masterpiece with DeNiro leading the way.
RockyfromPlano More than 1 year ago
The Mission is not my favorite all-time movie, but it does make my top ten. One of the most compelling stories ever told about the struggle between rich Portugese landowners trying to enslave the indians and the Church of Rome who is trying to convert the indians. It is a struggle of epic proportions and it is beautifully brought to life by Director Roland Joffe. Robert DeNiro and Jeremy Irons are spectacular.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a very slow moving video. The first hour could have been cut out. There was practically no character depth and I found some parts confusing. The way the movie was portrayed I thought that the European countries were having problems, not the officals in the Americas.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The most moving and humbling film I have ever seen! The score by Mr Morricone is a masterpiece in and of itself
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent story of compassion and greed. The music is beautiful. The scenery is extrordinary. I was so moved to tears by this story. I found myself speechless after viewing it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I want it in Spanish Subtitled!
Guest More than 1 year ago
trying to get some info on whether or not the DVD format is in stock. very hard to navigate through the website. this was the only way to find any info...