Prayer Focus
Movie Review

The Order also known as “The Sin Eater,” “Sin Eater,” “Devorador de pecados,” “A bűn rendje,” “Devorador de Pecados,” “Günahlarin bekçisi,” “L'ordre,” “La setta dei dannati,” “Le purificateur,” “O Devorador de Pecados,” “O amartovoros,” “Pakleni red,” “Sin Eater - Die Seele des Bösen,” “Syndätaren,” “Synninsyöjä,” “Zjadacz grzechów”

MPAA Rating: R for violent images, sexuality and language

Reviewed by: Michael Morgan
CONTRIBUTOR

Extremely Offensive (blasphemous)
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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Adults
Genre:
Action Suspense Mystery Thriller
Length:
1 hr. 42 min.
Year of Release:
2003
USA Release:
September 5, 2003
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Twentieth Century Fox

What about the death and resurrection of Christ was important and vital to Christianity? Answer

HELL—What did Jesus say about it? Is it a real place? Answer

How can I be saved from Hell? Answer

DEMONS—Can Christians be demon possessed? How can Satan influence believers? Answer

What are demons? Answer

Are you going to Heaven? Are you SURE you know the answer this extremely important question? Find out now!

SUICIDE—What does the Bible say? Answer

Does God really exist? How can I know? Answer

If God knows I am HURTING, why doesn’t He help me? Answer

Does God feel our pain? Answer

Starring: Heath Ledger, Jon Laurimore, Giulia Lombardi, Shannyn Sossamon, Mark Addy | Directed by: Brian Helgeland | Produced by: Craig Baumgarten, Adam Merims, Brian Helgeland, Tim Van Rellim | Written by: Brian Helgeland | Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox

The Order” is a movie about a dwindling group of Catholic priests called “Carolinians”, who are responsible for casting the demons “back into hell from which they came.” The main character, Alex (Heath Ledger), is on a never ending search for knowledge when his mentor dies. We learn, as the movie goes on, that Dominic, Alex’s mentor, took Alex under his wing after his mother’s tragic death. Alex grows into adulthood as a Carolinian and goes on his first mission, to investigate the murder of a young boy.

On this assignment he meets a girl (Shannyn Sossamon), and she stays with him. Years later, during an exorcism, she shoots him. Right before he leaves for Rome, to investigate Dominic’s death, she returns to him. When they get to Rome they learn of a man called a Sin-Eater, who is able to allow access to Heaven without having to give yourself to God.

Alex meets with the Sin-Eater, and the Sin-Eater talks him into break his vow of celibacy. I would love to divulge more, but I’m afraid that it would be giving away too much.

This movie is chock-full of Catholic mythology, and fights between the good guys and a few demons. Also, it graphically depicts suicide, and a murder or two. The language in the movie, however detestable, is at least not extreme. There is a sex scene in this R-rated movie, but it was done with as much class as I think a sex scene could be done.

“The Order” leads one to believe that not only does God not care about us, and turns a deaf ear, but that there is another way to eternal salvation without taking Jesus into your heart. This is just not true.

I found this movie to be fairly well made, but extremely offensive, and certainly not for viewing by anyone less than an adult or the most mature teen. If despite these warnings, you choose to view this movie, be ready to hold tightly onto your beliefs, after all we would be nothing without God.

Violence: Heavy | Profanity: Moderate | Sex/Nudity: Heavy

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Negative
Negative—This is another example of a Hollywood movie that inaccurately portrays Christianity in order to appeal to the secular society. I made the mistake of going to see this with my mother (both of us Christians, but not Catholic). We should have taken note that the theater was empty. It starts out as a murder mystery. We were both drawn into the film until it started talking about a Sin-Eater. We looked at each other and said (out loud and in unison), “What?”

The idea of the Sin-Eater is lodged into the movie as a way of escaping accountability for evil (nice try secularists, but this doesn’t work either). Ledger’s character, being an ordained priest falls for this and doesn’t even question it biblically or otherwise (I was ready for the big debate that never came). Also I must say that one of the most attractive things to me about a man is his uncompromising faith in Christ (this is what made me fall in love with my husband).

So you can imagine my disappointment in the movie when Ledger follows his “fleshly” ways and has sex with the female (out of wedlock and with no repentance). Which brings home the point that celibate men (even when they’re priests) have no business in Hollywood movies. This, to me, portrays men as weak and not confident in their faith (another recurring theme in Hollywood—Contact comes to mind). Christians need to steer clear from this one.

It’s a sci-fi movie using religion as its vehicle. Movie makers need to stick to their zombies and aliens.
My Ratings: [Extremely Offensive/2]
—Dawn, age 32
Negative—The premise of the movie (i.e. the Sin Eater) is probably blasphemous, but this movie was so completely inept that it didn’t bother me much and I took it with a grain of salt. But others may see it differently. In fairness, it should also be pointed out that being a Sin Eater is not highly regarded by the characters in the movie either-they also consider it blasphemous. Bottomline: It’s not worth the risk that you’ll be offended-the movie is laughably bad (of the Mystery Science Theater 3000 variety)-so why take the chance?
My Ratings: [Average/1]
—Andrew, age 24
Movie Critics
…the premise is blasphemous… characters make statements that will curl Christians’ toes…
—Bob Smithouser, Plugged In!, Focus on the Family
…should persuade viewers to think about and discuss salvation, Christ and the church, but the film includes violence, sexuality and obscene language…
—Shaun Daugherty, Preview Family Movie and TV Review
…Abhorrent… mixed-up pagan worldview where a “good” Christian man tries to stop evil but he explicitly replaces the Triune God of the Universe and the salvation offered through Jesus Christ with himself…
—Dr. Tom Snyder, Movieguide
…a stupendous bore… another dreary horror film. …
—Wesley Morris, Boston Globe
…an idiotic religious thriller…
—Jonathan Foreman, New York Post
…Mixed-up, murky thriller a holy mess…
—Chris Gladden, The Roanoke Times
…encapsulates almost everything that’s wrong with Hollywood commercial fare these days. It’s unrelentingly dark and humorless, lacking in humanity, awash with a near-risible, “unsettling” sense of dread, and pocked with tired CG effects (the sin-eating manifestations resemble psychedelic pasta) and inept storytelling. It’s filled with mind-numbingly boring scenes of pseudo-religious palaver…
—David Noh, Film Journal International
…There isn’t a segment of the audience it is likely to please… There isn’t any spirituality or godliness in “The Order,” either—just murky satanic rites passed off as the mythology of an alternative religious order.
—Ed Blank, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review