Deliver Us From Evil

2007-12-21 13:28
What it's about:

This documentary recounts the true story of a paedophilic Catholic priest in Northern California who molested children from as young as nine-months to a middle-aged mother of another adolescent victim through the 70s to the 90s. Deliver Us From Evil uncovers not only Father O'Grady's atrocious crimes but also exposes negligent Church officials through interviews with the paedophilic priest, victims, activist, psychologists and lawyers as well as scrutinizing trial documents and videotapes.

What we thought of it:

Amy Berg's decision to document Father O'Grady's story without any frills is refreshing compared to the usual over-dramatized movies inspired by true events, where more often than not the line between fact and fiction is blurred. No actors could have fully captured the fear, pain and shame that these victims feel, even though many years have passed since they were touched inappropriately and sodomized by someone they trusted as a messenger of God.

The film transcends dealing only with the violation of the children's innocence and focuses on the devastated parents of the victims who felt cheated by the church's inability to stop O' Grady by moving him from one parish to the next, leaving room for more children to be added to his list of sexual conquests. The parents' testimonies are alarmingly emotive and moving and you can't help but feel disgusted at O'Grady and the Catholic Church for destroying their belief and trust in God.

Even though the Catholic Church declined to comment on the matter, Berg inserted video tapings of court proceedings when O'Grady, Bishop Cardinal Roger Mahoney and other bishops were interrogated during his arrest. The videotapes lend Deliver Us From Evil authenticity and credibility saving it from being one-sided. The evasiveness of church officials when answering questions goes to show that they are as much to blame as O'Grady is. Berg hammers home this idea by interviewing well-versed lawyers and theologians who help us understand the complex bureaucratic nature of the church.

But the most infuriating aspect of this transfixing documentary is the testimony of O'Grady himself, who only served seven years of his jail sentence and is now roaming the streets of Ireland. His calmness and lack of remorse while recounting how he manipulated parents as he sexually abused their children for more than two decades, is absolutely appalling.

The realness of it all makes Deliver Us From Evil an impossible film to forget.

- Tiisetso Tlelima
Layer by layer Amy Berg unravels the story of the monstrous paedophile, Catholic priest Father O'Grady who molested and sodomized hundreds of children across parishes in Northern California.

Alison Alexander 2007/11/11 7:37 AM
Mrs By time people spoke out agains abuse in places of trust and what should be seen as a haven, especially the church. We should expose more people especially family members who perpetrate these horrible deeds as they feel they are "covered" by family just like the priest knows he is "covered" by the church. Reason they are "covered" is because as with family the church feels ashamed at exposing this as it is "skin off their face"
stan 2007/11/11 9:08 AM
religion this is what religion will do to u! the bible says that religon(living by laws) encourages sin. poor men were trapped in it. religion is the enemy of God, he wants us to live by grace, in freedom!!
Tam 2007/11/11 8:42 PM
celibacy I dont think catholics are right the way they make nuns and priests be celebate, i dont think God would want that. I'm glad God is a God of justice and even though that father o grady is out of jail now he will reap what he has sown in the next life.
Dominic 2007/11/11 8:56 PM
About time its about time some one decided to expose the type of unpleasantness occurring all too often within the catholic church. The abuse of the innocent is unforgiveable. The hierarchy in the Church should be held responsible.
li 2007/11/11 9:01 PM
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Brett Moolman 2007/11/12 2:14 AM
Religeon? I think it is time that the idea of catholic or any church for that matter to be closed,person prosecuted and jailed should they molest,harm a child or ward in their care.I grew up within the roman catholic church enviroment in Durban,they believe themselves to be above the law and immune from prossecution -I am afterall a man of God and I follow these teachings is such an easy way to get away with anything- Besides who would you rather believe -The Priest or the molested person- the latter hardly ever gets believed when it is a matter against the church
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