Absolution (1978)

R   |    |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Absolution (1978) Poster

At a Catholic public school, Benjamin Stanfield is tired of being the teacher's pet and decides to play a practical joke on his form master Father Goddard. In confession, Stanfield tells ... See full summary »



  • Billy Connolly in Absolution (1978)
  • Richard Burton in Absolution (1978)
  • Richard Burton in Absolution (1978)
  • Billy Connolly in Absolution (1978)
  • David Bradley in Absolution (1978)
  • Richard Burton and David Bradley in Absolution (1978)

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Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews

20 July 2017 | HotToastyRag
| Exciting thriller!
Richard Burton plays a priest in Absolution. I know, his real-life persona was very un-priest-like, but that's why it's called acting! I mean, Frank Sinatra played a very convincing priest in The Miracle of the Bells, and he was just as un-saintly as Richard Burton in real life. Anyway, Burton gives a great performance as a man of the cloth. He's conflicted and pained, and when he even hears about a sin, you can see him struggling not to take it as a personal insult.

He's a teacher and mentor in a boys' Catholic school, and during one of his lessons, the boys ask about the rules during confession. If someone confesses to a crime, will the priest turn him into the police? Burton answers, almost directly into the camera for the audience's benefit, that the priest is bound to silence and can't call the police if he's told of a crime. Then, surprise! One of his students confesses a murder.

Granted, if this movie had been made today, it would be a lot more gruesome, and probably have a few more twists and turns. But it was made in 1978, and so if you watch it, keep that in mind. There are a couple of violent scenes, but nothing overly graphic. And I thought it was thrilling, with enough twists and turns to keep me on the edge of my seat. It's a lot of fun to watch a manipulative, snot-nosed student take Burton to the brink of insanity!

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