With taglines that included “The messenger must be silenced” and “You don’t have to believe…to suffer” , the horror film with religious undertones called “Stigmata” gathered quite a following at the movie theater. The flick centers on the unexplainable phenomena of ‘stigmata,’ which deals with sores, wounds, and painful sensations that correspond to the crucifixion wounds of Jesus. In this article, we will explore the plot of the movie, as well as interesting facts and trivia.
“Stigmata” begins when a Vatican priest is instructed to investigate claims that a small Brazilian town is home to a church where a statue bleeds from the eyes. At the same time, a young woman residing in the United States starts to exhibit the signs of stigmata. Eventually, the Vatican priest meets up with the woman and takes on the responsibility of caring for her while her signs of stigmata grow with intensity. Some of her symptoms include ranting and erratic behavior that the priest is finally able to interpret. In the end, he is faced with the questioning of his own religion.
In the movie, Patricia Arquette plays Frankie Paige , the woman who experiences the signs of stigmata. Gabriel Byrne plays Father Andrew Kiernan, who comes to her rescue. Other actors and actresses who appear in the film include Jonathan Pryce (as Cardinal Daniel Houseman); Nia Long (as Donna Chadway , Frankie’s best friend); Thomas Kopache (Father Durning); Portia de Rossi (as Jennifer Kelliho); and Patrick Muldoon (as Steven).
“Stigmata” Trivia and Facts
While those unfamiliar with birds are not keen on this fact, but when the doves flying into Frankie Paige’s hands are obviously eating from the palms of her hands.
Patricia Arquette takes on the character of Frankie (which is short for Frances) , making reference to the saint, Francis , whom we hear from the Vatican priest (played by Gabriel Byrne) was the first to receive the stigmata.
In the scene where you see the body of Almeida in the coffin , it is really a wax dummy that was constructed in Los Angeles that was shipped to the filming location.
Does the subway scene look familiar? It is the same fake train carriageway that is sometimes seen in the TV show comedy of ‘Seinfeld.’
The scene that shows inserts of the crucifixion (when Frankie is experiencing her first attack of stigmata) , the nailed arms are made of rubber with wires that allow the fingers to move in a slight manner.
If you were wondering what Cardinal Daniel Houseman is saying to another priest when a few words in Italian are exchanged , the dialogue translates into “Rest assured, none of this will never leave this room.” This scene takes place when Father Kiernan (Gabriel Byrne) enters the Vatican office to receive his new assignment.
When paying attention to the final scene in the garden , the statue in the background is of Saint Francis of Assisi , who is the woman that Gabriel Byrne mentions was the first person to bear the marks of the stigmata.
When Patricia Arquette and Nia Long are acting in the “subway scene” , they are the only individuals that are not stunt people.
When it came to the role of Frankie, Rupert Wainright (the director) had always had Patricia Arquette in mind. Before the start of the film’s production, Wainright briefly toyed with the idea of calling the film “St. Frances of Pittsburgh.” Hmmm , good thing he chose a different (more catchy) title.
When Frankie is writing on the wall , it is supposed to be “Aramaic,” but the characters are actually from ancient Hebrew , all because Wainright felt that its appearance looked more interesting.
It is said that “Stigmata 2” is slated for a release date of 2009.