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59 Reviews
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36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marvellous
I never understand the bad reviews that one reads for this film. It is a stunningly beautiful evocation of Francis life. Do you find it a modern reading of Francis? Good!! That will let you connect with the real person.
A most beautiful film, full of art references. DO NOT MISS THIS FILM!!
Published on 28 July 2004

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A pleasant film of its time.
A nostalgic trip back to the Seventies.Also a 'hippyish' view of the early life of St.Francis of Assisi with some nice music by Donovan and lovely photography of the Italian countryside.
Published on 29 Mar 2011 by Bob Spinks


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36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marvellous, 28 July 2004
By A Customer
I never understand the bad reviews that one reads for this film. It is a stunningly beautiful evocation of Francis life. Do you find it a modern reading of Francis? Good!! That will let you connect with the real person.
A most beautiful film, full of art references. DO NOT MISS THIS FILM!!
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Saint Francis in a late twentieth century context, 9 July 2003
The date of release says it all; Francis' return from a disastrous war leaves him scarred and disillusioned. The parallels with Vietnam are obvious, although not overdone; Donovan's music plants this squarely in the seventies. A series of (simply portayed) religious experiences changes Francis' life, and gradually that of his friends.
Shot in Northern Italy in the bright colours and "spit and sawdust" that are Zeffirelli's trademarks (as in his Jesus, and Romeo and Juliet, and parodied mercilessly in Jabberwocky and Life of Brian), the cast rise to the occasion to produce a romanticised version of Francis' early adult life, slightly over the top, perhaps, but coherent and dramatically plausible. If the costumes or some of the scenes are extravagant, they nonetheless portray the ethos of the central Middle Ages very well: small town rivalries, the increasingly uneasy relations between rich and poor, the lumbering ritual of a rapidly stagnating Christianity that the Franciscans did so much to revitalise. If it didn't look quite like that, it ought to have done.
I have loved the film since I first saw it and still find myself singing the music (failed hippy!).
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving, 6 Dec 2000
By A Customer
I firts saw this film as a child (I must have been six or seven). I loved it, and as for the music, I cannot listen to it without being moved to tears. Zeffirelli really caught the spirituality of St. Francis.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars St Francis for the 1970s, 30 Oct 2010
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Zeffirelli's take on St Francis is very much of its time with its echoes of anti-Vietnam war protest, flower power, hippies, youth revolt, etc.

Much maligned on release, it looks far better in perspective. Indeed, it is something of an undiscovered gem, an unusual and provocative study of contrasting wealth and poverty, true religion and hypocrisy. There is a curious and pervading sense of purity in the portrayal of Francis and his friends -- though the religious aspect is delightfully understated -- some exquisite photography of the Italian countryside, and of course Donovan's songs, especially the beautiful Brother Sun, Sister Moon, rarely if ever heard nowadays.

The modern hippy movement, despite its spiritual pretensions and original iconic status, came to little in the end; but Francis and his followers, who also turned their backs on society in search of something more meaningful, left their mark on the world for ever.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best film ever, 28 July 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973] (DVD)
I never understand the bad reviews that one reads for this film. It is a stunningly beautiful evocation of Francis life. Do you find it a modern reading of Francis? Good!! That will let you connect with the real person.
A most beautiful film, full of art references. DO NOT MISS THIS FILM!!
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What an amazing movie, 15 Feb 2005
This review is from: Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973] (DVD)
It is an incredibly inspirational and encouraging movie. I haven't yet seen a film that has taught me so much about myself and my faith as this one. Take a look, I reccommend.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A memorable score from Donovan...a poetic account, 19 Nov 2001
Brother Sun, Sister Moon is a memorable and poetic account of the Saint's (Francis) life. Donovan's score is beautiful, evoking the mystery and humanity of Francis' very earthy form of spirituality. The film does not pretend to be an accurate historical account...rather it is a poetic celebration of timeless themes in Francis' life: brotherhood, sisterhood, solidarity with humanity, the earth, and the dignity of labour. The appearance of Clare underscores the relation of the erotic and the sacred, which appears in so many 'spiritual' traditions - which are, after all, literary traditions that go under another name.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A rediscovered favourite, 7 July 2010
This review is from: Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973] (DVD)
Another film i hadn't seen since i was a child. So glad i bought it. I love the music, the cinematography is exquisite, the cast delightful. But what inspires me most is the absolute surrender to God's will that Francis displays. I am aware of other film adaptations of St Francis of Assissi, and i would surely check them out. However, for me, Brother Sun, Sister Moon is as good as it gets. A true masterpiece that i never tire of watching.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars brother sun, sister moon: a classic, 22 Mar 2004
By 
Dave Balbarada (Nurses Home, Royal Brompton Hospital, Sydney St., London SW3 6NP, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973] (DVD)
This is one of the many brilliant works of the accomplished director Franco Zeffirelli. The cinematic score of the film is beautiful especially the choice of location and custome despicts the uniqueness of that time. The story line is very fluid that the viewer would not want to leave his seat until the whole movie is finished. I particularly admire the originality of the musical score by Donovan that does not only appeal to the ear but constantly courts the soul to admire and imitate the life, devotion and passion of Francis and Claire. Graham Faulkner as Francis and Judi Bowker as Claire have made these two Christian and historial icons real to the human eye in their profound acting skills and faithfulness in their portrayal. It is a must see film for both the young and old ... sinner and saint to be. Two-thumbs up!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars nostalgia, 6 July 2010
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This review is from: Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973] (DVD)
If you are fond of beautiful well composed scenes, impressionist landscapes then this is well worth watching. I first saw this when I was about 17/18 and about to enter art college. I was really struck by the art direction and photography. I then was fortunate enough to travel to Assisi soon after the film was completed. (The Rocca Magiorie being used as part of the inside of Francis's family business). The film has a kind of innocent quality about it and feels to be more about the ideal than the characters of Francis and Clare. Parts are particularly moving, such as Francis's meeting with the Pope.

A shade too long but a nice addition to the debate about the radical lifestyles of these two inspirational lives.
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Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973]
Brother Sun, Sister Moon [DVD] [1973] by Franco Zeffirelli (DVD - 2004)
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