The Secret Scripture

6.61 h 48 min2017PG-13
A woman living in a small Irish village during WWII is unjustly sent to a mental hospital on the suggestion of a priest scorned when she refuses his advances and falls in love with another man.
Jim Sheridan
Rooney MaraVanessa RedgraveTheo James
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Eric BanaAidan Turner
Noel PearsonRob Quigley
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
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Prime Video (streaming online video)
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4.5 out of 5 stars

1624 global ratings

  1. 74% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 13% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 8% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 3% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

enaashbyReviewed in the United States on February 2, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Ireland's troubled relationship with its church
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As someone who grew up in Ireland, this movie really resonated with me. I was adopted, and, later in life, met my birth mother who told me about how she was treated by the nuns at the mother and child home she had to go to before I was born. This movie is an indictment of the way many women were treated in Ireland because of the Jansenistic Roman Catholic church at the time. There is still a level of misogynism in Irish society to this day. I loved this movie. Theo James was probably too good looking for the role of Fr. Gaunt. I kept thinking I was looking at a gorgeous male model in every one of his scenes. Eric Bana's Irish accent needed a bit more work. However, overall, it is worth checking out.
301 people found this helpful
Devin MunceReviewed in the United States on October 24, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
A Rare Masterpiece
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This masterpiece struck my heart deep. Having never heard of this, and stumbled across it by chance (or was it), I chose a rainy evening to partake. Having had a mother who was institutionalized for many years of her life, this brought back many painful memories, and it was extremely accurate. The electroshock treatment for instance does wash away memories; I recall my mother not even knowing me after a treatment was applied. Alas, every cloud has a silver lining, and despite many painful moments through the course of the story depicted in this film, it was worth it in the end. Beautifully set in Ireland during wartime, you will be transported back to a different time and magical place. Religion's ugly face shows through in a painful way; this too hit close to home. So, settle in for a quiet evening, and get a box of tissues ready, you'll need those; but, in the end, they'll be tears of bittersweet joy.
134 people found this helpful
meReviewed in the United States on February 3, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
This is sad, sad
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This is sad, sad, sad, very sad, but the story is important. The movie claims that it is fiction at the end, but the sad, sad truth is that this kind of thing DID REALLY happen. I'm part Irish, I've been to Ireland and had some very romantic ideas about the place. I'm thankful that my great grandfather escaped Ireland and made the US his home. No country is perfect. US certainly has its problems, too. I had believed it was the English that made life a living hell for so many Irish, but the sad truth is that the Irish also made hell for each other and the Catholic Church and the Church of England had much to do with it. Punishing and victimizing the weakest members of any society is the most demonic and unchristian thing imaginable. Even though this story is not based, supposedly, on any one person's story, I cry to think that any part of humanity could be so evil. I just watched a series here, SINGLE-HANDED, that also touches on some of the very dark Irish history, not that long ago. One of the characters said, 'People come here and think it's so beautiful, but I don't think they know what they are looking at.' I just Googled some human rights abuses in Ireland, to get some facts.
244 people found this helpful
K.C.Reviewed in the United States on February 16, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Excellent movie...
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I thought this movie was well written and acted. It's a very sad movie!The acting was superb... I just want to make something clear without giving away the story in any way. I could not understand how people could give this movie a one star review. So I did a little research myself and checked out these people's other reviews. Guess what? Most of the movies they reviewed were one star. Some people just can't be happy with anything! To give this movie a poor rating is ridiculous!
125 people found this helpful
Chatty CathyReviewed in the United States on February 17, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Compelling, Thoughtful, Sad and Sweet
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Beautifully acted by Vanessa Redgrave and Rooney Mara. The 40's scenes were very well done, although at times it was unclear what the conflict (or war as it was referred to) actually was. I read later that it was an Irish Civil War. That does not ruin anything, but does confuse the story a bit. Perhaps it's only me. The direction and all of the other actors are compelling in their supportive way. Make no mistake, this is Vanessa and Rooney at just about their best ever, with a compelling story to drive them. I wish I had read the book, the mystery and the context of the secret scripture was most likely as compelling if not more so than the rest of the story. It is a little slow at times in the first 30 minutes but it picks up naturally and gracefully. We need more gems such as this one, thanks to Prime Video for making us aware of it. Brilliant.
58 people found this helpful
Rickie BroadfootReviewed in the United States on February 11, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Beautiful and heartbreaking.
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One of the most beautiful and heartbreaking movies I've ever seen. The plot was believable, the acting was perfection. A poignantly dark story told masterfully. It takes a lot to make me cry, but this pulled at my heart. Pay no attention to the bad reviews because they had to have hearts of stone. The song at the end, sung by Kelly Clarkson, was the cherry on top.
90 people found this helpful
Kira S.Reviewed in the United States on April 15, 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
Heartbreaking, beautifully acted
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***WARNING: POTENTIAL SPOILERS*** Terribly sad but beautifully acted movie. It's almost unbelievable the power the church wielded in the past - and in some cases still does. A single letter from a priest, cosigned by a disgruntled family member, dooms a young woman to a mental hospital. All this because the priest couldn't keep his libido in check and was jealous that the woman loved and married someone else. Then the same priest steals her baby and accuses her of killing it, so she remains in the mental hospital for almost her entire life. For those who find the ending unbelievable, did you really think the priest didn't keep track of the child? And that finally, before he has to face his God and answer for his sins, he sent the son back to the mother? Makes perfect sense to me. Nothing can bring back the 50 years she spent in the asylum, but she was united with her son at last.
41 people found this helpful
Happy ShopperReviewed in the United States on February 8, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Intense drama
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This is a beautiful movie, but a sad story. I had to take breaks from watching it because the sadness overwhelmed me. It’s saddens me because of the power of a vindictive priest over a young woman, and his ability to have her committed for life with just the stroke of a pen. I know this is fiction, however with recent headlines about priests it makes this story very believable.
44 people found this helpful
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