Page 6, 29th August 1941

29th August 1941
Page 6
Page 6, 29th August 1941 — Film

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The Story of the Vatican

DAILY life in Vatican City, together with historic scenes depicting the

Pope as head of the vast spiritual realm of the Catholic Church, is pre sented in the first full-length motionpicture ever made within the precincts

of the Holy City. In the course of this film the voice of Mgr. Fulton J.

Sheen, of the Catholic University of America, is heard, explaining the various scenes in " The Story of the Vatican."

Produced by the March of Time, under the direction of Richard de Rochemont, the picture has just had its world premiere in San Francisco.


In addition to the American version of the film, with narration by Mgr. Sheen, there will be Spanish, French and Portuguese versions for showing in Europe and in Latin America. The directors or the March or Time. it is announced, were encouraged to undertake this full-length motion-picture of the Vatican following reception accorded the recent shorter March of Time film on the Vatican, of which this is an entirely new and enlarged version. What the editors have sought in this film, it is said, is an objective portrayal of the Vatican as it is to-day, with explanatory remarks by Mgr. Sheen throwing light'on the foundation of the Church and its history, and scenes in the life of Pope Pius XIl, particularly with reference to the Church's mission in the world to-day.


According to an old legend," Mgr. Sheen narrates, " pagan Rome was founded by two brothers. Romulus and Remus, who during their infancy had been nourished by a she-wolf of the forest. But history has it that Christian Rome was founded by two spiritual brothers, Peter and Paul, whose nourishment was the otherworldly food of the Lamb of God." Mgr. Sheen also points out that " Rome has been the living heart of Christianity for 1,900 yea " "S." entenced to death, but fated not to die, survivor of a thousand crucifixions by a thousand resurrections, the Church of Rome amidst a war-torn world, is the beacon of 330,000,000 communicants who are looking to its Head as their supreme and infallible ruler in faith and morals—His Holiness Pius XII. Bishop of Rome, Vicar of Christ on earltnh.:uccession the film depicts scenes from the recent history of the Church and the life of Eugenio Cardinal PaccIli as Papal Secretary of State. prior to his elevation to the throne of Peter; the new Vatican radio presented by the inventor of radio, the late Guglielmo Marconi; the Vatican's Polyglot Press; the Vatican daily newspaper, Osservatore Romano; the diplomatic representation of 38 nations at the Vatican ; the present Papal Secretary of State, Luigi Cardinal Maglione, arid the work of his office; the'lloly Father receiving pilgrims in audience; the civil administration of the Vatican ; the daily life of the artisans and their families; the industries of the tiny State; the Vatican palaces, churches, gardens and meseurne: the Swiss Guard; the Vatican Library; the paintings that adorn the museums and art galleries; the Sistine Chapel; the world's greatest church, St. Peter's, built near the spot where St. Peter was crucified in the year 67: the tomb of St. Peter ; the Papal Household ; the Academy of Sciences; the North American College: glimpses of the various leligious Orders of the Church as these are represented at the Vatican and in Rome ; and. finally, the papal Apartments,

China Fights Back

OR the first time—at least as far as I can remember—the famous Soong sisters appear on the screen together. No„ they are not a vaudeville troupe but the vanguard of Chinese feminine emancipation—one married Sun Yat Sen and another Chian Kai Shek and their homes in China were and still are centres where the intehigenzia meet. Madame Chiang Kai Slack and her husband are Christians.

The United States have been China-Conscious for a long time now and both nationally and individually America has. helped China to counter the cruel oppression of the Japs. The March of Time shows how the industries, drivers out of the towns and cities, have retreated into the hinterlaed unbroken and undaunted 40,000,000 of them took the factories on coolie-back and set them up in practically open country and they ale functioning at more than pre-war capacity. The Chinese hare been reborn and they will conic gut of the ptesent conflict better and stronger than they have ever been before.

G. C. March of Time

Penn of Pennsylvania

AQUAKER-L1KE peace. pervades this story of the life of William Penn and at times the peace becomes almost somnolent. But it is a welcome change from the stress and noise of battle that takes up such a large share of the screen to-day and so it becomes an escapist film, thus ranging itself beside the spectacular musicals with the thousands or beautiful girls.

Within the last fortnight 1 read an account of the actual trial of William Penn and it made much more dramatic reading — and indeed. was much more witty—than the film version suggests. Penn wits a terror at repartee and while he wes being tried he gave the " Bench '' an uncomfortable time. lie was a kind of Bernard Shaw and used words like a rapier.

Clifford Evans, who plays the title tele., is quietly effective, but at times fails to drive home moments that should have been dramatic, After all, the Quakers burned with a zeal even if it was throttled down.

Deborah Kerr fits perfectly into the role of Mrs. Penn—her face radiates goodness. But I could not for the life of me accept the spectacle of dear, expansive Maim O'Neil], Irish and easy-going, being turned into a Quaker. Why does not some film studio dig up something worth while for this deter actress?--one of the brightest stars that ever came out of the Abbey Theatre. Deblin.

G. C.


Forty Thousand Horsemen

AUSTRALIA makes a successful jump • into screen fame with this story uf the " Diggers " in the last war and the way they fought their epic campaigns in Gallipoli and Palestine. One fact emerges more prominently than any of the others—it is the perfect light that must. make filming down under a joy and delight. The story does not matter very muchnor dues, the overshadowing of the Australian officers by the Diggers themselves, shoe* Australia had some magni

ficent officers in that campaign, too. And I wonder how some of the Catholic Australians will react to the remark of one of he Three Musketeers—" If it a dirty story I've heard it—and if it's clean I don't want !" I have met some Catholic Australians who, I know, will squirm.

What impressed me roost in this film was its really exquisite photography. The hand of' the artist is everywhere—whether the shot is eff a long line or Light Horse wills their fee(itcred hats ploughleg through the desert sand or the sharp light and shade of the Motel:y-4 is beautifully contrived. From a scenic point of view the picture could not

be better., G. C.

Leicester Square


Fun and Games

FLJNI there is in pleniy with Sydney Howard, Richard Hearne, Arthur Riscoc and Vera Pearce looking after things. London has no better team of comedians and only in a hunting scene do they fail to " ring the bell." Their burlesque of a trapeze act is the hest or the games. Richard Hearne also has done a rare bit of creative work in devising the ballet. " The Old Shoemaker," its which Carol Raye, a youthful newcomer, conies as near to the dancing or Lopokova as any English girl has ever done. What makes this item on the programme such a success that it holds up the performance for several curtain calls is that it combines a Russian technique with an English freshness. Success for English ballet has been waiting round the corner for a long time once the ballerinas shed their • attempt to appear as " Jemmies Males.G. C.

Princes ANSWERS TO ECCLESIASTICAL QUIZ Questions are on page 3.

1. The stipend due to a canon front the revenues of a cathedral. Canons in Great Britain have no prebends and do not reside at the cathedral.

2. Front the old French prestre meaning priest, hence his legendary titles of sovereign and high-priest. 3. A marriage which is invalid but has beets contracted in good faith by at least One of the parties. The marriage remains putative until both parties have certain knowledge of its nullity.

4. In some cases unessential ceremonies that have been omitted from a rite on account of urgency, etc., may and should be supplied later when it is possible. 5. At least every live years.

6. Yes, e.g., for contessors in the old Sarum rite. it has now been forbidden.

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