ROMERO (1989)

Sound Bites

If films were judged only on noble intentions, Romero would make it into film heaven.  (Richard Higgins 89)

I suppose there have been biopics as reverentially uninspired as Romero, but it can suffice as the definitive example of tedious and tendentious homage for the time being.  (Gary Arnold E3)

The difference between a historical film and a docudrama is time.  If you make a film with actors about Columbus, it’s historical.  If you make a film with actors about Archbishop Romero, it’s a docudrama.  Presumably actors were used for the modern subject because there wasn’t enough available footage to make a cohesive documentary.  But the trouble then is that the docudrama comes under the same aesthetic questioning as the historical film.  (Stanley Kauffmann 26)

What the film seems content to ignore in this simplistic presentation are the political implications of Romero’s religious faith.  (Hal Hinson B7)

Romero is an earnest, straightforward reconstruction of the life, political education and assassination of Oscar Arnulfo Romero, the liberal Archbishop of San Salvador, as he was celebrating Mass in 1980.  (Vincent Canby 15)

Psychopathic assassin and humble saint.  That is how history and myth have paired Roberto d’Aubuisson and Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero of El Salvador.  (Jefferson Morley 624)

In late 20th-century Roman Catholicism, a movement centered in Latin America that sought to apply religious faith by aiding the poor and oppressed through involvement in political and civic affairs.  It stressed both heightened awareness of the socioeconomic structures that caused social inequities and active participation in changing those structures. (Encyclopedia Britannica Online “liberation theology”)

In El Salvador, White thought, if military aid were used as a carrot, it would eventually be possible to purge the army of its most repressive elements and remake the institution into one that defended against outside enemies but did not brutalize its own citizens.  (Raymond Bonner 209)
 
 

Copyright (c) 1999 by Nathan Henry Laver, Undergraduate at Lehigh University.

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