Léon Morin, Prêtre (Leon Morin, Priest) (The Forgiven Sinner)
Léon Morin, Prêtre (Leon Morin, Priest) (The Forgiven Sinner) (1961)

A richly contemplative saga of grief, this is the tale of a young war widow who is helped to work through her doubts and bitterness by a young priest.

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: September 21, 1961
DVD Release Date: July 26, 2011
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
95%
Flixster
User Score
87%


Critic Score: 95% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Richard Brody
New Yorker

Melville films the religious dialectics with remarkable but dispassionate skill, and he uses the story of Barny and Morin to skew the postwar political context ...

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Scott Foundas
Village Voice

The result is a movie that moves with the diamond-cut precision and carefully constricting tension of Melville's trademark gangland sagas, the precious booty here being nothing less than the human soul.

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Michael Sragow
Film Comment Magazine

It's Riva's emotional vitality that powers the story, suffuses it with an oscillating vibrancy, and inspires Melville's most inventive, fluid moviemaking.

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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

A fascinating, unexpected movie that fans of French film in general, and Melville in particular, will not want to miss

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Variety Staff
Variety

Tale [from Beatrix Beck's 1952 novel] of a young agnostic woman's conversion to Catholicism and her physical love for a priest during the Nazi occupation of France is handled with tact and talent.

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Eric Monder
Film Journal International

Jean-Pierre Melville's quietly affecting film-and Emmanuelle Riva's performance-deserve rediscovery.

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Manohla Dargis
New York Times

Melville's eye for exacting detail here is expected. What is remarkable is the depth of feeling he exacts from the juxtaposition of these ordinary moments with their extraordinary context.

Geoff Andrew
Time Out

Miraculous cinema, even for heretics.

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Austin Trunick
Under the Radar

The film does suffer from several long, dry patches as it amounts to a whole lot of philosophical and spiritual tête-à-tête.

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Flixster Audience Score: 87% Flixster User Reviews
Walter M.
[font=Century Gothic]In "Leon Morin, Priest," Barny(Emmanuelle Riva) has a crush on Sabine(Nicole Mirel), the office manager at the correspondence… More
Chris Browning
Another wonderfully directed and filmed piece from Melville featuring top-rate performances from Belmondo and Riva. A wonderfully eerie and depraved setting… More
Emily B.
"Léon Morin, Prêtre" stands out in Jean Pierre Melville's body of work. Better known for his American style noir films such as "Bob le… More