Directed by Luis Bunuel. 1958.
Nazario's best intentions prove fruitless, however. He agrees to work on a road crew for food but in so doing creates a labour dispute that leads to violence. His guidance is again rejected when he volunteers to help a woman dying of the plague, asking her to picture what Heaven looks like. In spite of the priest's equation of sexual desire with sin, all she wants is one more visit from her husband and lover. Arrested and thrown into prison with Andara, Nazarin's life becomes more and more Christ-like in its agony. He is beaten by a thug and begins to question his faith when he is unable to forgive his assailant.
Is Father Nazario an impractical
fool trying to live by unrealistic ideals, or is he a modern-day Christ,
sentenced by a soulless world to endure a similar fate? Bunuel sends us
mixed messages. He attacks the hypocrisy of the church for not living up
to the teachings of Christ and seems to admire the priest for his rebellion
against accepted social norms. Yet ultimately Nazario is just a sad and
forlorn human being. Condemned by the church as a "nonconforming rebel",
scorned by a society that does not understand his passion, he carries his
"crown of thorns" to an uncertain end, perhaps realizing at last that his
self-satisfied idealism did not include understanding the true nature of
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