Father James (Brendan Gleeson) had a life before entering the priesthood, which is probably what makes him good at tending to his rural Irish flock. But one Sunday a man comes into the confessional and says he’s going to kill James in a week’s time. Not for anything James has done, but because the man was abused as a child by a priest and it’s time the Catholic Church paid for the damage done.
We don’t see the man but James knows who it is. However, he refuses to run or report the incident to police. He continues his duties.
Calvary is the name of the hill where Jesus was crucified, so yeah: men dying for the sins of others and all that. However, (true) writer-director John Michael McDonagh (The Guard) delivers this even-handed study of the Church’s (and Ireland’s) light and dark sides with dry wit. 8/10
Released July 3, 2014.