6.2/10
2,025
41 user 17 critic

The Proposition (1998)

Father Michael McKinnon goes from the U.K. to Boston circa 1935. For unknown reasons, he avoids at all costs the most prominent parishioners, Arthur and Eleanor Barret. Meanwhile, Eleanor ... See full summary »

Writer:

Rick Ramage
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Loggia ... Hannibal Thurman
Bronia Wheeler Bronia Wheeler ... Sister Mary Frances
Kenneth Branagh ... Father Michael McKinnon
Madeleine Stowe ... Eleanor Barret
William Hurt ... Arthur Barret
Ken Cheeseman ... Wayne Fenton
Jim Chiros Jim Chiros ... Timothy
Dee Nelson ... Susan Vicar
Pamela Hart Pamela Hart ... Skip Taylor
Wendy Feign ... Maid
Blythe Danner ... Syril Danning
Dossy Peabody Dossy Peabody ... Hannibal's Secretary
Neil Patrick Harris ... Roger Martin
Thomas Downey ... Torrey Harrington (as Tom Downey)
Tom Kemp ... Arthur's Chauffeur
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Storyline

Father Michael McKinnon goes from the U.K. to Boston circa 1935. For unknown reasons, he avoids at all costs the most prominent parishioners, Arthur and Eleanor Barret. Meanwhile, Eleanor and Arthur desperately want to have a child, but Arthur is sterile, so they hire Harvard law student Roger Martin to impregnate Eleanor, but unfortunately Roger falls in love with her.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One man gave up everything he owned. The other, everything he believed in.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 March 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shakespeare's Sister See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$61,560, 29 March 1998

Gross USA:

$147,773

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$147,773
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Scott Wolf and Matt Damon were considered for the role of Roger Martin. See more »

Goofs

A modern high-rise is visible between the buildings during the scene at the paupers' cemetery. See more »

Quotes

Father Michael McKinnon: You're probably the one person in the world Arthur Barret respects enough to fear, loves enough to kill for.
See more »


Soundtracks

Andante Op. 29, No. 1
Composed by Franz Schubert
Courtesy of Audio Action
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User Reviews

 
Not the Aussie western
30 November 2007 | by lastliberalSee all my reviews

I was looking for the Australian western of the same name and the Sundance credits writer got it wrong and roped me into this 1930s Boston Catholic melodrama. I still want to see the western, but this was not a bad misdirection.

Whoever cast A History of Violence had to see this film as William Hurt plays the same character in both films - marvelously, I might add. He is a rich Catholic businessman here instead of a mobster, but the basics are the same. He wants to give his wife (Madeleine Stowe in a great performance) a child and Viagra was not yet invented, so he hires someone (Neil Patrick Harris) to do the job. His only mistake was picking a 24-year-old who couldn't just take the money and walk away. OK, so we have a moral question here, but we ignore that for the movies sake.

Into his parish comes a new priest (Kenneth Branagh) and he jumps the Rabbit-Proof Fence, uses The Magic Flute, and we have an Alien Love Triangle. Didn't Richard Chamberlain do that naughty priest bit in The Thorn Birds? There is a lot of Catholic malfeasance, guilt and remorse and penance and symbolism here, but don't let that turn you off as it doesn't interfere with the story. And, no children were hurt in the making of this film.

There are some fine performances and an interesting story. You should check it out.


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