At Play In The Fields Of The Lord (1991)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5

USA, 1991.  The Saul Zaentz Company.  Screenplay by , Hector Babenco, based on the novel by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by , .  Film Editing by , .  

This adaptation of the novel by Peter Matthiessen is epic on length but not substance. Members of the large cast include  as a pilot who crash lands in the middle of the Amazon and ends up adapting himself into a Native tribe;  and  are missionaries deeply affected by the Natives they are there to minister to, the same ones who murdered the previous church leaders that lived there;  and are rival Catholic missionaries who also have a deep effect on the primitive civilization that surrounds them. It makes for intellectual viewing, but it’s also cold, calculated and totally shallow. Bates is excellent, particularly when her fear of this foreign culture drives her to the point of madness.

Golden Globe Award NominationBest Original Score


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