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Italian film comedy on fictional Pope draws large crowds, mixed reviews

April 19, 2011

An Italian film comedy about a Pope with psychological problems has made an impressive debut at the box office, and drawn sharply mixed reactions from Catholic reviewers.

Habemus Papam, directed by Nanni Moretti, has drawn thousands of viewers as it opens just before Easter—at a time when the papacy is particularly in public focus because of the upcoming beatification of Pope John Paul II.

Writing in Avvenire, the daily newspaper published by the Italian bishops’ conference, Salvatore Izzo gave the movie a negative review, and called for a boycott. But Vatican Radio and the Jesuit journal Civilta Cattolica saw the movie as inoffensive.


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  • Posted by: DrJazz - Apr. 19, 2011 11:49 PM ET USA

    I dare Moretti to make a film comedy about an Imam with psychological problems, and release it around Ramadan. Let's see how that one goes over.