An F.B.I. Agent persuades a social worker, who is adept with a new experimental technology, to enter the mind of a comatose serial killer in order to learn where he has hidden his latest kidnap victim.
A priest from the Vatican is sent to Sao Paulo, Brazil to investigate the appearance of the face of the Virgin Mary on the side of a building. While there he hears of a statue of the Virgin Mary bleeding tears in a small town outside of the city. Meanwhile, a young woman in the U.S. begins to show signs of stigmata, the wounds of Christ. The priest from the Vatican links up with her and cares for her as she is increasingly afflicted by the stigmata. Her ranting and raving finally begins to make sense to the priest who starts to question what his religion has stood for for the last 1900 years.Written by
Jeff Mellinger <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The Gospel of Thomas is a historical document that some believe to be the actual words of Jesus to his disciples; however, the real-life document was written in Coptic, an ancient Egyptian language based on the Greek alphabet, not Aramaic, as the movie states. See more »
Right before Frankie receives her first wounds as she lies in the bathtub, a bird flies in the room. When the bird flies off a single feather drops into the tub. As Frankie picks up the feather with her right hand, the bloodless wounds are already visible on her inner and outer wrist. See more »
Hey, you know what's scarier than not believing in God? Believing in him. I mean, really believing in him. It's a fucking terrifying thought.
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The DVD features an optional director's alternate ending from the theatrical version. In the scene near the end after Frankie (Patricia Arquette) is freed from her affliction, Father Kiernan (Gabriel Byrne) carries her outside in his arms and sits at a bench, and we see her collapse in his arms. He looks up to see her holding a bird in her hand, then she walks away. After she apparently walks away, he looks back down to see her lifeless body still in his arms -- she actually died from the fifth stigmata and he watched her soul depart. In the theatrical version, after she walks away with the bird, Father Kiernan is left alone on the bench, and the impression is that she's "cured" and lives the rest of her life naturally. See more »
Stigmata is at the very least controversial. I feel that it's really struggling to find a genre, so it's harsh to compare it to the Exorcist as many have. This is a film based somewhat on truth, and somewhat on legend with a little Hollywood finesse to bring it all together. It doesn't stay completely true to either a Christian audience or to mainstream Hollywood, but I think that's to it's credit. I don't know many people who knowingly make this kind of cross-over in their normal rental choices, so in that way, it helps to reach the largest possible audience. The way that the film afflicts it's heroine with the stigmata through the rosary is just typical screenwriting, and the romance aspects are predictable. The film, based upon the discovery of the Gospel of Thomas, assumes that the discovery of that scroll had never been know to the public, and that personal vendettas within the Vatican had helped to suppress it. In reality however, there have been numerous translations of that Gospel, although I rather doubt that the modern bible will be amended. (Due to it's debated authenticity.) In short, the film is thought-provoking, yet not heavy-handed in it's message. It leaves you asking questions as to your own faith, and to the nature of the established "church" far after you've reached the final credits. As an action-suspense-thriller I'd rank it about a 7 out of 10, but in terms of it's religious nature it succeeds greatly in the find-the-truth-for-yourself message that it conveys.
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