Movies for The Year of the Priest

Angelmeg and I got into a twitteresque brainstorming session this morning about doing a Year of the Priest Film Festival. (Yeah, I know, it’s the Year for Priests, but doesn’t that just make your lameness bells go off? Year of the Priest, now that has some gravity.) So we’re trying to come up with 52 movies that have a priest as a main character. That’s one movie per week for the duration of this Year of the Priest.

Here is what we’ve got so far, in chronological order by year of release:

1. Angels with Dirty Faces (1938)
2. Boys Town (1938)
3. The Keys of the Kingdom (1944)
4. Going My Way (1944)
5. The Bells of St Mary’s (1945)
6. The Fugitive (1947)
7. Fighting Father Dunne (1948)
8. Diary of a Country Priest (1951)
9. I Confess (1953)
10. The Cardinal (1963)
11. The Shoes of the Fisherman (1968)
12. The Exorcist (1973)
13. The Massacre in Rome (1973)
14. The Scarlet and the Black (1983)
15. Mass Appeal (1984)
16. The Assisi Underground (1985)
17. The Mission (1986)
18. The Fr. Clements Story (1987)
19. Black Robe (1991)
20. Molokai: The Story of Fr. Damian (1999)
21. The Third Miracle (1999)
22. Keeping the Faith (2000)
23. The Confessor (The Good Shepherd) (2004)
24. Doubt (2008)
25. Gran Torino (2008)

Help us out in the comments!


  1. Rufus McCain says

    here and here are sites with a few more candidates.

  2. Quin Finnegan says

    The Ninth Day (2004), directed by Volker Schlöndorff, belongs near the top of any list, as does The Prisoner (1955), starring Alec Guiness.

    I thought Twist of Faith was a good documentary on The Scandal, in spite of a few moments of fairly ham-fisted filmmaking. Deliver Us From Evil, on the other hand, is simply awful and should be avoided at all costs.

  3. Jonathan Webb says

    Wow, way off. You have sucked the life right out of me. I don't even think my poor heart could sustain a response. If you still want to be Sophie's Godparent you need to seriously re-evaluate. You too Angelmeg, I'm very disappointed. Leave it to the professionals next time.

    Made me cry.

  4. Jonathan Webb says

    Oh, about priests is it? Disregard the previous post. Don't know what I'm talking about. Mr. Man should read before he responds.

    My bad.

  5. Rufus McCain says

    I'm … so … con … fused …

  6. Anonymous says

    The Power and the Glory.

    Was the omission deliberate?

    I remember being impressed by The Cardinal when I was young.

  7. Rufus McCain says

    The Fugitive is also a film treatment of The Power and the Glory. The other one, which was not released theatrically in the U.S. (only on TV), could still make it onto the list.

  8. Anonymous says

    I was talking about the Preston Sturges / Spencer Tracy film.

    You said nothing about it having to be released in the US. You made a mistake.

  9. Anonymous says

    I see the 1933 film has nothing to do with the book of the same name, was probably made before the book was written.

  10. I can't believe it falls to me to name one of the great priest films: On the Waterfront (1954).

    And from the same year: Father Brown.

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