A tormented priest arrives in an Italian town where an upcoming election pits angry peasants against wealthy landowners. padre pio, the latest from author Abel Ferrara, chronicles the formative years of a future Catholic saint with an oddly unbalanced narrative. What could have been a gripping portrait of faith in times of crisis turns into boring work. The protagonist never interacts with the socioeconomic turmoil going on around him. Injustice plays second fiddle to tedious religious dogma in a movie that tests your patience.
padre pio (Shia LaBeouf) rides a donkey toward the Capuchin Franciscan Monastery in San Giovanni Rotondo. He devoutly prays for guidance under the fiery son. God may be the only savior from his heavy loads. In the town below, the soldiers return with the brutal scars of World War I. Giavanni (Cristina Chiriac) hugs her two young children as she searches for her husband. She is nowhere to be found while others cry, either with joy or despair. She is relieved when she is not listed among the dead.
Gerardo (Marco Leonardi) triumphantly leads the town. He is praised by his brother, Renato (Brando Pacitto), as an Italian hero. His family has owned the farmland for generations. Renato is the favorite for mayor in the first election. Luigi (Vincenzo Crea) does not share his confidence. He loudly preaches socialist principles to anyone he wants to listen to. The Russians overthrew the oppressors of him. Why should people continue to work and strive for the born rich?
a bloody lesson
Nightmares haunt Pio. He cries out in anguish as the other friars try to comfort him. Meanwhile, Luigi has a meeting with an important visitor. Silvestro (Luca Lionello) does not believe in a revolution. The socialists will win the next elections and will demand fair wages. They are interrupted by soldiers who curse them as traitorous cowards. Luigi spits at his feet. They have betrayed their own kind. Vincenzo (Salvatore Ruocco) looks hungrily at Giavanni. He reports the disrespect to Gerardo, who rallies his troops to teach Silvestro a bloody lesson.
Luigi and Gerardo represent the different factions of classism. Gerardo believes that the town does not deserve anything. They exist to serve your family. He is furious about catching the impoverished stealing crops. Luigi is an unabashed Marxist. No one should own the land. Everything must be distributed equally to the workers. The threat to the longstanding social order is evident. But Gerardo and his soldiers are armed to the teeth.
Pio has no part in the stew conflict. He is entrenched in the church listening to confessions of suffering with a constant refrain. Prayer and faith in God will be your savior. ferrara (King of New York, bad lieutenant) shows a glimpse of Pio’s supposed healing touch. Visions of him bring him closer to enlightenment, but they don’t impact people in any significant way. They are cruelly subjugated without recourse. Are we to infer that the grace granted by Pius is consolation enough?
The Mystical Awakening of Padre Pio
Ferrara clouded his intentions with a failed approach. padre pio runs along two tracks that needed a meaningful connection. Direct rebellion and the mystical awakening of the priest detract from each other. LaBeouf, a tremendous actor, seems completely out of place. He doesn’t have an Italian accent either, which doesn’t make any sense.