SURVIVING CONFESSION is an offbeat comedy about a Catholic priest who’s barely coping with his weekly confessionals. He’s a seemingly kind priest who understands the human condition. Parishioners confess to meaningless mistakes. The catch is that the priest knows what the true sins are of each parishioner as each on confesses to the sins of the other. Eventually, he must deal with an irreverent teenage girl and a love triangle involving a married woman that the priest is attracted to himself.
The acting in SURVIVING CONFESSION is serviceable, with brief moments of nice comic timing. The writer and director’s choice of breaking the fourth wall with the priest is interesting and helps break up the movie nicely. However, the music seems poorly placed, and the camera angles are sketchy. The filmmakers obviously felt the need to add unnecessary cursing to a subpar script to fix it. That said, the priest’s personal confession at the end is heartwarming and helps give the movie a light Christian worldview overall. Ultimately, though, SURVIVING CONFESSION suffers from too much foul language and too many Anti-Christian, immoral elements.
(C, B, AbAb, LLL, V, S, AA, MM):
Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Light Christian worldview focuses on what happens in a Catholic confessional booth, the movie takes place in a cathedral, people ask for forgiveness, and men and women sometimes admit their sins and regret them, but marred by some Anti-Christian behavior, elements and mockery that include a man says he’s only confessing to escape Hell, the priest is attracted to a married woman and vice versa, but priest later repents, and a teenage girl mocks the confessional and later admits to having had an abortion after getting pregnant with her mother’s boyfriend, but she regrets the abortion;
At least 31 obscenities (about five or more “f” words) and six profanities;
One scene where a fist fight breaks out between two men and mention of having gotten an abortion;
Man cheats on his wife, girl pretends to get aroused in confessional to get priest into trouble, priest tries to kiss a woman, girl openly mentions sex and how she couldn’t live without it, and talk about past fornication between a teenage girl and her mother’s boyfriend;
No explicit nudity, but girl has open side shirt and most of her bra is exposed; Alcohol Use or Abuse: Man and girl drink alcohol on the floor of a church, and a man comes in drunk to confessional;
Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
No smoking or drugs; and,
Lying, jealousy, cheating, people let doubt overwhelm them.
SURVIVING CONFESSION is an offbeat comedy about a Catholic priest who’s barely making it through his weekly confessionals. He’s a seemingly kind priest who understands the human condition. Parishioners come and confess to meaningless mistakes. The catch is that the priest knows what the true sins are of each parishioner as each one confesses to the sins of the other. The priest, Father Morris, is disgruntled about his weekly Friday confessionals because none of the parishioners seems truly repentant because they return every Friday with the same issues.
As Father Morris conducts his confessionals in a small room one Friday, an older teenage girl named Amber enters and turns his life upside down. Claiming she’s killed a man, Amber makes a mockery of the confessional and continues to prod and poke Father Morris until he asks her to leave several times. She begins a truth or dare game, consisting of only truths, with Father Morris.
Next, a man with an oxygen tank walks into confession claiming he only has a month to live. Throwing a Hail Mary, the man quickly apologizes for everything and says he may not even think God is real. Father Morris loses his temper and kicks the man out. Following the man is the mistress of the husband cheating on Mary (the priest’s love interest). She confesses her sins, and Father Morris orders her to tell the husband they can’t see each other anymore.
Mary then enters the confessional. Weary, she sits down next to Father Morris, and he tries to kiss her. Mary slaps him. Then, the husband enters the room. What will happen next?
SURVIVING CONFESSION is a low budget production. The acting is serviceable, with brief moments of good comic timing. The filmmakers’ choice of breaking the fourth wall with the priest is interesting. It helps break up the movie nicely, but the music seems poorly placed, and the camera angles are sketchy. Sadly, the filmmakers obviously felt the need to add unnecessary cursing to their subpar script, which could have been made better through more rewriting.
SURVIVING CONFESSION has a light Christian worldview. For example, people ask for forgiveness and sometimes admit their sins and regret them. However, as noted above, the movie has an excessive amount of foul language. It’s also marred by some other Anti-Christian behavior, elements and mockery, including adulterous behavior. Eventually [SPOILER ALERT], the teenage girl confesses she had an abortion after getting pregnant with her mother’s boyfriend, but she regrets the abortion. In the end, the priest himself has to confess his own sins to God, which results in a heartwarming scene. Despite that, MOVIEGUIDE® thinks media-wise viewers will find SURVIVING CONFESSION too excessive and unacceptable.
SUMMARY: SURVIVING CONFESSION is an off-beat comedy about a Catholic priest who’s barely making it through his weekly confessionals and suffers from his own sinful desires. SURVIVING CONFESSION is sometimes interesting, funny and engaging, and has some positive Christian elements, but it suffers from a subpar script, shaky production values, too much gratuitous foul language, and too much Anti-Christian, immoral content.
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