Director Nanni Moretti

Director Nanni Moretti

Comedy sends up the white smoke

We Have a Pope, Vernon Film Society’s last film of the regular season, is a comedic peek into the inner workings of the Vatican.

We Have a Pope, Vernon Film Society’s last film of the regular season, is a comedic peek into the inner workings of the Vatican. The title refers to the election of a new pope, with director Nanni Moretti imagining the backstage moves entailed in this highly secretive process.

The man chosen was not the front runner and was not expecting to be elected.  Petrified by the enormity of the role, he turns away from addressing the faithful in St. Peter’s Square and effectively rejects the papacy.

The spokesman for the Vatican finds himself drawing on all his resources to solve the ensuing crisis. He even calls in a psychiatrist to find out what is ailing the new pope. Is there something seriously wrong with the man?

Even as the world waits nervously outside, inside the therapist tries to find a solution. The Pope is adamant – he does not want the job. What follows is a marvelous portrait of the man behind the title of God’s representative on earth.

The director Moretti has always been able to balance a fine sense of irony and humour with a deep humanism and these qualities are abundant in We Have a Pope.

The 85-year old lead, Michel Piccoli, presents a sensitive portrait of a man caught in a conundrum. The result is a magnificent blend of humour with a deeply affecting portrait of a man elected to an office that carries crushing responsibilities.

We Have a Pope will be shown at the Towne Cinema Monday at 5:15 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Tickets are available at the door and one week ahead at the theatre and the Bean Scene for $7.

A new season of summer films starts in July. Pick up a program or check the website at www.vernonfilmsociety.bc.ca.