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Brother Sun, Sister Moon

HD   PG Closed Captioning

Franco Zeffirelli

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About the Movie

St. Francis of Assisi was an extraordinarily complex and difficult figure whose effect on his contemporary society was electrifying. Even today, many people are moved by his visionary message of universal toleration. Twelfth-century Italy had an exceptionally grim and regimented society, but the barefoot monk from Assisi undoubtedly had the courage that comes from deep faith and was able to transcend the oppressiveness of the time. In this Italian/British-produced film, director Franco Zeffirelli attempts to bring his vision of this great man to the screen. The contemporary (1970s) example of the hippie movement contributed a great deal to the style in which the story is told. The musical score, using ancient Italian melodies, was arranged by Donovan. The film is visually beautiful in a way which tends to minimize the squalor of the times. As the movie begins, Francis (Graham Faulkner) is the son of wealthy merchants, and enjoys his share of wine, women and song without serious thought. When war and disease devastate his neighborhood, Francis undergoes an anguished transformation which culminates in his appearing before the local bishop and removing his clothes to renounce his previous life and family before dedicating himself to God. The culminating dramatic moment is Francis' appearance before Pope Innocent III (Sir Alec Guinness), to make his case for an independent religious order under new rules.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 18
  • Fresh: 8
  • Rotten: 10
  • Average Rating: 4.9/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: Zeffirelli has made a big, absurd doodad, a movie that confuses simplicity with simple-mindedness and that makes saintliness look like an extreme form of Asian flu. – Vincent Canby, New York Times, Mar 11, 2015

Rotten: Zeffirelli's work looks like a Sunday-school coloring book: everything is glowingly photogenic, including poverty, and leprosy. – Jay Cocks, TIME Magazine, Mar 11, 2015

Fresh: Franco Zeffirelli has utilized a style of simple elegance, befitting both the period and the subject. – Variety Staff, Variety, Mar 11, 2015

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

I love this movie!

I first saw this movie about 20 years ago. The story of Francis of Assisi, who leaves his rich lifestyle to devote himself to his beliefs.

This movie is GREAT!!!!

I love this movie! When you watch it, it fills you up with such love. I really don't know how to explain it but it is so beautiful.


I love the scenery, especially the fields of poppy. You could completely empathize with the St. Francis character. Everyone should see this movie, especially if you like to collect expensive handbags, diamond rings, and other materialistic things galore.

Brother Sun, Sister Moon
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  • $12.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 1972

Customer Ratings