6.7/10
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Pope Joan (2009)

Die Päpstin (original title)
A woman of English extraction born in the German city of Ingelheim in the ninth century disguises herself as a man and rises through the Vatican ranks.

Director:

Sönke Wortmann

Writers:

Donna Woolfolk Cross (novel), Heinrich Hadding (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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4 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Johanna Wokalek ... Johanna von Ingelheim
David Wenham ... Gerold
John Goodman ... Pope Sergius
Iain Glen ... Village Priest
Edward Petherbridge ... Aesculapius
Anatole Taubman ... Anastasius
Lotte Flack ... Johanna von Ingelheim - Age 10-14
Tigerlily Hutchinson ... Pope Joan - age 6-9
Jördis Triebel ... Joan's mother
Oliver Cotton ... Arsenius
Nicholas Woodeson ... Arighis
Suzanne Bertish ... Bishop Arnaldo
Richard van Weyden ... Eusthasius
Branko Tomovic ... Paschal
Lenn Kudrjawizki ... Jordanes
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Storyline

German village Igelheim's backward priest hopes his sons to succeed him after education in the bishop's cathedral school, but the elder succumbs to disease and the youngest lacks any intellectual drive. Traveling teacher Aesculapius arranges for the inquisitive daughter Johanna to be enrolled too, against their father's wishes. Unfit for the boys-only dorm, she gets to stay with count Gerold, incurring his wife's due jealousy. She's to be dismissed, but survives a Viking pillaging slaughter and assumes brother Johannes's identity to join a monastery, where she becomes the infirmary's trainee. Fleeing exposure as female, she arrives in Rome. As a protégée of rivals in the viper nest-like papal court, she ends up elected as pope, but carries count Gerold's baby, guaranteeing exposure. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | UK | Italy | Spain

Language:

English | Latin

Release Date:

22 October 2009 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Pope Joan See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

EUR22,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$28,748,076
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Volker Schlöndorff was originally set to direct this movie but left over unspecified differences with the production company. See more »

Quotes

House Steward: Pardon me, Eminence. The girl has arrived. You had her fetched from Ingelheim.
Fulgentius: Oh yes, now I remember. That Greek scholar's idea. But am I seeing double?
House Steward: The boy is her brother. Their father, a Priest, insists that he too be allowed to attend the Scola.
Fulgentius: What do you know? I send for one and get two! If only the Emperor were as generous as these holy men from the countryside!
See more »

Connections

Featured in De Wereld Draait Door: Episode #5.139 (2010) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Between Cameron, Wortmann and Cross, War is ending. Zimbardo lives.
17 June 2010 | by Lawsonk-1See all my reviews

This movie is about the indomitable spirit of many of our species regardless of race or sex. It's not about liberal or conservative, it's about right or wrong. Not about girl or boy, but about the abilities of each of us to advance the human cause on this earth. It's not about Buddist, Jew or Christian but about aleivating all the suffering we can. Consider that for one month of the cost of the war in the middle east, every human could have access to clean drinking water. Who knows where the next Einstein or TuTu will come from, surely the potential exists and needs a chance to show itself without the intolerance of prejudice for one of a different color, sex or the distance from your home they come. We have a duty to expand our knowledge and expose all to the light of reason and in that we have no fear. This movie is a gift to parents and adults that want to find the ways to help all. Ignorance is not bliss, the scene about the mustard seed is worth the price of this great movie. Allegory is when your teacher thanks you. Thank you mother.

Wokalek and Flack are superb and a joy. John Goodman is like your pastor or priest and as amiable as I imagine JohnPaul II. Petherbridge as Aesculapius is exactly my image of Hesse's Magister Ludi and Wenham, a developing Chomsky, could of evolved into a Smedly Butler! For those in power this could be a great mini-series for all involved, IMHO. Villains don't get a mention, sry Iain and AT. m.


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