The Vatican Film List â.. Ten Years Later

Though often characterized, somewhat misleadingly, as â..the Vaticanâ..s top films,â. the list is meant neither as a set of definitive or magisterial â fifteenâ. lists nor to establish these particular films as definitely more worthwhile than any film that was not included. Titled simply â..Some Important Films,â. the list is simply a cross section of outstanding films, chosen by a committee of twelve international movie scholars appointed by the head of the pontifical commission, Archbishop John Foley. Archbishop Foley has said that the list is not intended to canonize these particular films; and, in releasing the list, the commission acknowledged, â..Not all that deserve mention are included.â.
The list is made up of three categories, â..Religion,â. â..Values,â. and â..Art,â. with 15 films in each of the three categories. Some are well-known favorites (e.g., Itâ..s a Wonderful Life; The Wizard of Oz). Others have extraordinary moral or spiritual significance (e.g., A Man for All Seasons; Schindlerâ..s List). Still others are challenging â filmsâ. that demand literate critical engagement (the austere mysticism of Tarkovskyâ..s Andrei Rublev and The Sacrifice; the exotic grotesquerie of Felliniâ..s La Strada and 8½).
The Vatican Film List: Ten Years Later

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