Film Summary: A Post Day Shepherd?

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A Post(Modern) Day Shepherd?
This essay will begin just as the film did, with a quote from Saint Augustine, “Do not despair, one of the thieves was saved. Do not despair, one of the thieves was damned”. This quote serves to set the scene for the eight day journey through the moral maze that Father James must make if he is to keep an appointment with his executioner. In this essay we will focus on the film Calvary staring Brendan Gleeson. Since the opening of John Michael McDonagh's Calvary (2014) it has been praised by the public and media for its accurate interpretation of modern day Ireland and the Catholic Church sex scandal. In Donald Clarke's review for The Irish Times, he claims that “John Michael McDonagh's problematic follow up to The Guard begins with an ingenious, arresting coup de cinema, that
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The opening of the film captures a quote from Saint Augustine, “Do not despair, one of the thieves was saved. Do not despair, one of the thieves was damned”. Gleeson's character, Father James maintains a gentle and kind approach towards the characters in the film. Throughout the film he tends to the needs of his “flock”. There are many images of Jesus shepherding his flock with sweet sheep around him, this gives the wrong impression, it was not an easy job. Shepherding has always been a difficult, an edgy business, they were meant to bring sheep back and also ward off enemies. In this film, Father James depicts a real priest as a shepherd. The man in the opening scene of the film who threatens him could be seen as the black sheep of his flock, that goes without saying that obviously not all the other characters are without flaws. Father James encourages the weak, as shown when he tries to help Dylan Moran's character Michael, a wealthy business man in coping with his lack of mortality. He also does his best not to cast judgement towards others beyond the requirements beyond his

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