· The film ·
Dead Man Walking ( 1995) tells of the meeting between Sister Helen Prejean ( Susan Sarandon) and Matthew Poncelet (Sean Penn): a few days before his execution, the man - racist, violent, rapist and a murderer - chooses the religious woman as a spiritualguide. Taken (with a few changes) from the autobiographical novel by Sister Helen Prejean, the film by Tim Robbins has at its centre an extremely difficult meeting. Especially for the woman, who will see herself attacked by everyone for her choice of coming close to such a negative person. Dead man walking is a film against the death penalty, against a system that saves the rich and condemns the poor, against hatred that corrodes. But it is, above all, the story of a reciprocal listening. "Jesus was a dangerous man," Sister Helen says to Poncelet during one of their meetings, who replies "What is dangerous about loving your own brother?”. The danger lies in the overwhelming power of love, that can radically change things, she says. And only fifteen minutes from the lethal injection, the religious woman will know that she has not loved in vain. ( @ GiuliGaleotti )
St. Peter’s Square
Feb. 29, 2020
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