Agnes of God

Synopsis: At a convent, fragile, unearthly Sister Agnes gives birth, but the child dies and Agnes retains no memory of the event. The police soon are involved because of the death of the baby. However, the main conflict is between Mother Superior Miriam Ruth, who wants Agnes left alone, and Dr. Martha Livingston, a psychiatrist determined to help Agnes gain a stronger grasp on reality and uncover any wrongdoers.
Genre: Drama, Mystery
Director(s): Norman Jewison
Production: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations.
 
IMDB:
6.6
Rotten Tomatoes:
45%
PG-13
Year:
1985
98 min
1,479 Views


FADE IN:

EXT - CONVENT - DAY

Whispering of nuns at prayer.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT - CHAPEL - DAY

Nuns at prayer; MOTHER MIRIAM, the Superior closes the gate and locks it.

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT - COURTYARD - DAY

The nuns walking around the courtyard in an anticlockwise direction saying the rosary.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT - CHAPEL - DAY

A line of nuns kneeling at prayer. Closeups of various individuals.

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT - CONVENT - NIGHT

A single shot of the building.

INT - TOP CORRIDOR - NIGHT

SISTER MARGUERITE is locking up for the night, shutting doors, turning off lights, finally walks off down the corridor. Suddenly a terrified scream is heard, the voice of a young woman.

EXT - CONVENT - NIGHT

Lights in the windows flick on.

INT - TOP CORRIDOR - NIGHT

The nuns are running up the corridor in their night dresses and caps, calling urgently in French. They reach the door of Sister Agnes' room and try the door. It is blocked. Pushing harder they see the blood stained figure of SISTER AGNES. Much alarm and crying...

MOTHER SUPERIOR:

Agnes!... Agnes...

EXT - CONVENT - NIGHT

An ambulance comes tearing down the road, siren blaring. It cuts the siren and stops outside the convent gates. The nuns open the gate and the ambulance drives inside.

INT - TOP CORRIDOR - NIGHT

Two PARAMEDICS urgently run the stretcher down the hall to the unconscious figure of Sister Agnes. The Mother Superior desperately wipes and kisses her face.

PARAMEDIC:

I'm just going to put something here to

stop the bleeding. Excuse me Sister.

She'll be fine.

They lift her on to the stretcher and run back down the hall.

The Mother Superior looks around worriedly and goes into...

INT - SISTER AGNES' ROOM - NIGHT

She kneels down by a waste paper basket full of bloodied sheets and starts to pull them out. Then she freezes, makes the sign of the cross and starts to weep.

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT - MONTREAL - NIGHT

An aerial shot of the great cross of Montreal. Superimposed over this are the words

"MONTREAL, QUEBEC".

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT - SUPREME COURT - DAY

A normal busy day. A car pulls up with a woman and a man driving. The woman is MARTHA LIVINGSTON. She kisses the man (LARRY), gets out of the car, runs across the road dodgingtraffic and goes up the steps of the courthouse. There a group of REPORTERS there and a sudden bustle of interest.

REPORTER:

Here they are now.

Martha watches intently as 3 nuns, the Mother Superior, Sister Marguerite, and Sister Agnes (dressed in a white novices habit) and their LAWYER come out of the court escorted by police. The reporters leap on them, taking photographs, asking questions in English and French. Suddenly Sister Agnes looks right at Martha, then she is quickly bustled past. Martha goes on into the courthouse.

INT - JUDGE'S CHAMBERS - DAY

Inside EVE, LYON, and JUSTICE LEVEAU are sitting. Martha is standing by the window smoking furiously.

LEVEAU:

Martha, it's you.

MARTHA:

What about Roger? He's free.

EVE:

They want a woman.

LYON:

All you have to do is meet with her

once or twice... then tell the court

she's insane.

MARTHA:

Are you dictating my position to me?

We're getting into some sticky legal

territories here.

EVE:

Martha, all we're saying is, no-one wants

this to come to trial, not the Church, not

the Crown... least of all me.

MARTHA:

Eve, she strangled a baby!

EVE:

Nobody is interested in sending a nun

to prison.

LEVEAU:

We're not telling you what to decide

Martha. We're not even telling you to

take this.

LYON:

Is there any reason why you feel you

shouldn't take it?

Martha pauses for a long moment at the window, then turns.

MARTHA:

Today's my birthday. I always make

bad decisions on my birthday.

The Judge, Eve and Lyon all chuckle. The Judge throws the file down on his desk towards her.

LEVEAU:

Happy birthday.

15 INT - MARTHA'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Martha unlocks the door and comes in. She plays her answerphone

and moves over to her cat.

MARTHA:

Hi, Kitty.

The answerphone whirs...

SECRETARY (V.O.)

Hi, it's Helen, calling to tell you

that Mrs Davenport phoned to confirm

her appointment at nine o'clock

tomorrow, okay? Bye bye.

Some whirs and clicks.

ROGER (V.O.)

Hi Martha, it's Roger. Can you call

me at the hospital. I'd like your opinion

on a case. Oh, bye the way, happy

birthday. Bye.

SECRETARY (V.O.)

Hi, Marty it's Helen again. I cancelled

your Wednesday afternoon appointment

so you can visit with your mother. Bye bye.

MAN:

(in French)

???

Martha picks up a news paper with a photo of Sister Agnes on

the front.

DISSOLVE TO:

16 EXT - CONVENT - DAY

Martha pulls up in her BMW outside the convent walls and gets

out, cigarette

in hand. A sign tangled over with creeper reads "Les Petites

Soeurs de Marie Madeleine". Martha jangles a bell. After a wait she

presses a buzzer. A peephole in the door slams open and Sister

Marguerite looks out.

MARTHA:

Bonjour, I'm Doctor Martha

Livingston, I...

The peephole slams shut, but the door does open. Sister

Marguerite glares at her.

MARTHA (Cont.)

Hello... I'm Doctor Martha

Living...ston... I...

Martha realizes it is the cigarette that is causing the trouble

and hastilygrinds it underfoot.

MARTHA (Cont.)

Excuse me... I'm...

Sister Marguerite eyes flick down at cigarette butt. Martha

awkwardly tries

to kick it away.

MARTHA (Cont.)

...the court-appointed psychiatrist.

Sister Marguerite gives a frosty imitation of a smile and

motions for her to come in.

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John Pielmeier

John Pielmeier was born on February 23, 1949 in Altoona, Pennsylvania, USA. He is a writer and actor, known for Agnes of God (1985), Hitler: The Rise of Evil (2003) and Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story (2009). more…

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