The Mission
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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 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… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 65%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The two principal actors, Robert De Niro and Jeremy Irons, work hard to animate their parts. But there is little to do. The Mission is probably the first film in which De Niro gives a bland, uninteresting performance."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
""The Mission" is everything a movie should be -- magnificently produced, epic in scope, serious in theme -- everything, that is, but good."
‑ Paul Attanasio, Washington Post
"Joffe's pseudo-epic about slave trading and missionaries in South America is attractive to look at but distorted and anachronistic."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"Simultaneously slick and sloppy....For all of The Mission's back-to-nature trappings, it's actually a perfect film for the Reagan-and-Thatcher era that produced it."
‑ Nick Davis, Nick's Flick Picks
"Long, ponderous, but De Niro and Irons always are interesting to watch."
‑ Bob Bloom, Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
"The Mission manages to be both magnificent and curiously uninvolving, a buddy movie played in soutanes."
‑ Derek Adams, Time Out
""The Mission" effectively dramatizes yet another chapter in the ruthless European conquest of the Americas. It'll make you hate the whole of western civilization with every fiber of your being."
‑ Rita Kempley, Washington Post
"A near-masterpiece. De Niro is excellent."
‑ Clint Morris, Moviehole
"Boring statement about the human condition. DeNiro's a bad guy. Deal with it. And missions are barbaric. Get over it."
‑ Fred Topel,
"Deeply moving film that reminds us of the vitality of love, the miracle of grace, and the transforming power of acts of conscience."
‑ Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice
"A singularly lumpy sort of movie."
‑ Vincent Canby, New York Times
"...a little too pious for its own good. Be that as it may, the movie's heart is in the right place."
‑ John J. Puccio, Movie Metropolis
"Atmospheric, fascinating drama set in deep jungle with strong De Niro and Irons."
‑ Steve Crum,
"The film looks superb from start to finish, the acting is almost universally top notch ... and Morricone's score is a fine accompaniment to Joffé's passionate, heartfelt vision."
‑ , Film4
More reviews for The Mission on Rotten Tomatoes

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