Just confused after watching sister act movies?


#1

As a person considering joining an order there were a lot of this that think were incorredon't hate the movie but I feel like the director didn't know a thing about religious orders or what the definition of cloistered was. I have read about different orders and it was actually laughing at how uncarmelite-like these nuns were. I won't even point out all of the things wrong because there are a lot and I don't want to nitpick the entire movie. But I do have two questions.

Firstly, the habits the nuns wore didn't look very carmelite to me they actually look more like poor clares but I'm not 100% sure about that. Does anyone know what habits they were wearing were? They also changed to Franciscans in the second on (no idea how or why) but they stayed in the same habits and I know that's not the Franciscan habit.

Second question, they called the friars teaching at the school fathers... errr what? If I'm not mistaken priests dont dress that way. Can a friar or monk be called father I'm pretty sure friar means brother and monks are called brother as well at least that's what they called the two who lived in the house at my old school. The only two people who dressed like priests and were the priest from the archdiocese and the monsignor from the first one other than that they were dressed as friars. Were they dressed correctly? I'm pretty sure they weren't

Anyways no im not thinking about joining a religious order because of this movie because im pretty sure in real life none of that happens and i pity anyone who wanted to join for the reasons of the movie. But i mean it sort of bothered me since there were parts i know were wrong and others i wasnt too sure of. Apart from the things they got wrong (which was a lot) did anyone like the movies?


#2

Yeah, "Sister Act" is an entertaining film and I always enjoyed it as a kid, but I wouldn't consider it an accurate portrrayal of religious life. On the other hand, I do believe that religious men can and do become priests.


#3

Sister Act movies are comedies. They are not meant to be accurate, just funny.


#4

It's Hollywood. They like Catholicism when they can make fun of it, villianize it, or use it as an authority on the supernatural (and even then, they change it to fit the plot).

That being said, some friars ARE priests. E.g.: All Franciscans are friars, but there are also priests counted in their orders. When a friar is ordained a priest, he does not cease to be a friar.


#5

Actually a priest who is a Franciscan (A friar) would normally wear their habit. Franciscans don't have the distinction between a Friar that is a priest and a friar that is not. They are all friars, and would wear their habits even if they were ordained. However, outsiders noticing which ones would say mass, would call them Father.

Also, I don't think the sisters themselves are suppose to be Franciscan in the second movie, it seemed more like, they were asked to come help the struggling school.

Anyways, their semi cloistered life, with the element of service thrown in with that habit made me think of Benedictine Sisters/nuns. They have this weird combination of having a cloister walk and being rather cloistered and then also running schools and hospitals, etc. They have sort a confused history, because while they all follow the rule, they do not all trace their founding to Scholastica. So there founders had different goals in mind when founding the (school, healthcare, evangelization, or contemplation/monasticism).


#6

The sisters in Sister Act were not supposed to be cloistered Carmelites. They were supposed to represent an active teaching order (and one where their school was on the verge of being closed - see Sister Act II). The fact that they wore traditional habits was to 1) make them look like nuns and 2) provide an environment where Whoopie Goldberg could hide from the bad guys in disguise. Many active teaching orders in the US no longer wear habits, and there aren't may Catholic schools these days that are fully staffed by sisters any more. This was artistic license.

If you are looking for reality about religious life in movies, then you are doomed to disappointment. Movies are not documentaries. Their aim is not to educate but to entertain and to make money. It is very naïve to think otherwise.

There are some good documentary style movies about religious life, and some good fictionalized accounts of nuns and saints. Do a little research to find these and leave movies like Sister Act to those who simply want to be entertained and amused. Whoopie Goldberg is a comedienne and the movie was a lovely vehicle for her.


#7

However, I would recommend the film No Greater Love: A Unique Portrait of the Carmelite Nuns. It’s a documentary about life inside a Carmelite convent, and it was shot as after the documentary Into Great Silence.

It’s a beautiful film, and you can find it on Amazon.com.


#8

The movie's fun, laughed my way through both of them. However, they need not be taken seriously as portrayals of religious life.


#9

[quote="confusedgirl, post:1, topic:337491"]
As a person considering joining an order there were a lot of this that think were incorredon't hate the movie but I feel like the director didn't know a thing about religious orders or what the definition of cloistered was. I have read about different orders and it was actually laughing at how uncarmelite-like these nuns were. I won't even point out all of the things wrong because there are a lot and I don't want to nitpick the entire movie. But I do have two questions.

Firstly, the habits the nuns wore didn't look very carmelite to me they actually look more like poor clares but I'm not 100% sure about that. Does anyone know what habits they were wearing were? They also changed to Franciscans in the second on (no idea how or why) but they stayed in the same habits and I know that's not the Franciscan habit.

Second question, they called the friars teaching at the school fathers... errr what? If I'm not mistaken priests dont dress that way. Can a friar or monk be called father I'm pretty sure friar means brother and monks are called brother as well at least that's what they called the two who lived in the house at my old school. The only two people who dressed like priests and were the priest from the archdiocese and the monsignor from the first one other than that they were dressed as friars. Were they dressed correctly? I'm pretty sure they weren't

Anyways no im not thinking about joining a religious order because of this movie because im pretty sure in real life none of that happens and i pity anyone who wanted to join for the reasons of the movie. But i mean it sort of bothered me since there were parts i know were wrong and others i wasnt too sure of. Apart from the things they got wrong (which was a lot) did anyone like the movies?

[/quote]

Speaking as one who has not had a chance to watch the first one completely from start to finish, I found it to be funny, but I also 'heard' quite clearly the usual question from worldly folk--why can't cloistered nuns come out and share? That if they shared all that love they could turn the world around--just as the nuns did when they left the convent in the movie. Also, the 'suggestion' of 'inculturating' the sacred music in order to attract the worldly.

My suggestion in response to that: perhaps cloisters can have active sisters in the vicinity for just such an outreach.

I wouldn't see the movie as showing anything legit about religious life. Just enjoy the storyline and the habits. The choir wouldn't be that incompetent about singing, for one thing.

Convents have been known to take in "unusual" guests. "Dixie: Changing Habits" is based on a true story, but the nuns' religious practices in the movie are kind of strange. I can't imagine wearing the rosary around my neck for meals!

You'd probably have a better chance of getting a good idea regarding religious life by surfing YouTube. There is a lovely one about the Daughters of the Heart of Jesus. Shows the nuns going about their work and prayers then shows individuals going about their daily routines in the world.

Blessings,
Cloisters


#10

I suppose the movie was just for laughs and I can understand that but gee I figured theyd do a little bit of homework. Like Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame was spectacular it didn't copy Victor Hugo's book 100% and I can understand that because its a kids movie (I read victor hugo when I was 15) but they took a lot of the design from Notre Dame and even named the a few of the bells correctly (yes I checked) I mean maybe its because I'm such a book worm and I have a love for learning why things like wrong habits in Sister act bothered me but it is a movie I guess not every director is going to do their homework. Its not Schindler's List or Titanic where you must have your facts down. Thanks for clearing up the Franciscan Friar deal I really wanted to know that


#11

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