And There Came a Man | Chicago Reader

And There Came a Man

Ermanno Olmi uses the writings of Angelo Roncalli (1881-1963) to narrate episodes from his life, following him from early childhood to his investiture as Pope John XXIII, but this 1965 film gives little sense of why he became a major reformer. Much of what we learn is unsurprising: John admires the “simplicity” of Jesus's teachings, thinks the purpose of being a priest is to help the poor, and avoids looking at street posters “where indecency might be found.” As the main character, Rod Steiger is less an actor than a stand-in, hanging around Paris and Venice in a business suit and speaking English. The odd distancing devices don't really work—especially here, where Steiger's dialogue has been dubbed in Italian and translated back into English subtitles. 86 min.


Cast information not available at this time.

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