Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16

Where To Watch

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Critic Reviews

  1. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Nov 15, 2012
    60
    Fearless nonfiction filmmaker Alex Gibney ("Taxi to the Dark Side," "Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer") details a history of horrific abuse by Catholic clergy in this tough-to-watch documentary.
  2. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Nov 13, 2012
    40
    Mea Maxima Culpa only gets messier the more it tries to iris out to a larger indictment. The central tragedy ends up diluted to a fault.

Awards & Rankings

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 11 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Feb 14, 2013
    10
    I am very careful how many documentaries like this I watch. I stay away from watching them because there is nothing that I can do right awayI am very careful how many documentaries like this I watch. I stay away from watching them because there is nothing that I can do right away to make an impact towards the main cause of the movie. Topics like starving kids in Africa, major corporations taking over the world, etc. those are all incredibly sad, yet overwhelming for a simple individual like me.

    However, this movie addresses a topic that has been covered for many, many years, and is present all over the world, particularly in the US: sexual abuse by priests, and the covering up of their actions by their superiors all the way to the head of their denomination (in this case, the pope). I have yet to decide which part is more monstrous the act, or the cover-up.

    From a technical point of view, the movie is very well done. The agenda is very clear, but it is not filled with hatred and anger. I found it wise that the producers quietly presented the facts from the victims themselves, and included trustworthy persons in the interviews (NY Times reporter, archbishops, former priests, etc.).
    Full Review »
  2. Aug 4, 2013
    9
    If Dan Brown had written a novel about a cover-up in the Catholic Church on the scale depicted in this film, it would be treated as a greatIf Dan Brown had written a novel about a cover-up in the Catholic Church on the scale depicted in this film, it would be treated as a great work of fiction. The trouble is, it’s all true and that’s the most shocking thing about it. It is a very well made film that has a compelling flow to the narrative and this is helped with some nicely chosen musical backdrops. The only thing that lets it down is a lack of balance, but then, as it says in the film, the Vatican refused to be interviewed for this film. Not that they could have put up any defence. I found it a gripping watch that did get a little emotional at times. Well worth a look whatever religion (or not) you are.

    SteelMonster’s verdict: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

    My score: 8.8/10
    Full Review »